We reported on Land Rover’s Defender EV project a few month’s ago,and now we have news about their use of renewable energy in the manufacture of internal combustion engines. Jaguar Land Rover have announced in a press release that:
Jaguar Land Rover has completed the installation of the UK’s largest rooftop solar panel array at its new state-of-the art Engine Manufacturing Centre at i54 South Staffordshire. The new facility has been designed with sustainability embedded throughout and has recently been awarded BREEAM’s ‘Excellent’ rating for the design stage of the assessment for sustainable buildings.
More than 21,000 photovoltaic panels, with a capacity of 5.8MW, have been fixed to the roof of the Engine Manufacturing Centre, with plans to increase this to over 6.3MW by the end of the year. It is estimated that the system will generate more than 30% of the Engine Manufacturing Centre’s energy requirements.
Here’s what just some of all those solar PV panels look like:
Trevor Leeks, the Operations Director of JLR’s Engine Manufacturing Centre said that:
Our world-class facility showcases the latest sustainable technologies and innovations. The completion of the UK’s largest rooftop solar panel installation here at the Engine Manufacturing Centre is just one example of this.
As the first manufacturer to win the ‘Responsible Business of the Year’ last year, environmental innovation lies at the heart of Jaguar Land Rover’s business.
The Electric Defender, however, is conspicuous only by its absence from the rest of the press release, which continues:
The state-of-the-art Engine Manufacturing Centre is the first new plant that Jaguar Land Rover has built from the ground up. The site represents an investment of more than £500 million and will create almost 1400 new jobs by the time the plant reaches full capacity. The world-class plant will manufacture the first family of premium, advanced technology engines, Ingenium, to be entirely designed and built in-house by Jaguar Land Rover for exclusive use in the company’s future vehicles. The Jaguar XE, debuting in 2015, will be the first vehicle equipped with these four-cylinder engines.
Jaguar Land Rover’s Engine Manufacturing Centre uses cutting-edge heating and lighting systems designed to minimise energy demand through the use of insulated cladding, to maximise daylight through the roof design and to harness natural ventilation through the use of automatic louvers. Extensive energy monitoring facilities in the plant continually analyse the amount of energy being used and identify opportunities to reduce that energy consumption, for both electricity and natural gas.
Building 30% of a range of 4 cylinder engines using renewable energy is a step in the right direction. One cannot help but wonder, however, when the day might arrive that Electric Defenders are constructed using 100% renewable energy?