02 May 2023

Alfen Helps Centrica Business Solutions Build Its First Battery Storage Development Project in Belgium

  • 24MW/~54MWh Battery Energy Storage System is Centrica’s first battery storage development outside the UK
  • Alfen’s TheBattery Energy Storage System balances energy supply and demand in the Belgian electricity grid and will contribute to the country’s capacity market to ensure long-term energy supply
  • Located in Oostende, the system will deliver power to 48,000 Belgian homes for 2 hours when it starts operations in Q1 2024

Almere, The Netherlands [2] May 2023 – Alfen, an energy solutions specialist at the heart of Europe’s energy transition to limit climate change, and Centrica Business Solutions, a global leader in decentralized end-to-end energy solutions, are working together to build Centrica’s first battery storage development project in mainland Europe as the company expands its portfolio of energy assets outside of the UK for the first time.

“We’re excited to work with Centrica Business Solutions to bring its first battery storage project outside the UK to life with our TheBattery Elements system,” said Michelle Lesh, Chief Commercial Officer for Alfen “Battery storage technology has evolved significantly over the last decade, and we’re proud to support Centrica’s ambitions across mainland Europe, especially in Belgium where the market is growing quickly as it prioritises green energy to secure its long-term energy supply.”

The 24MW/~54MWh facility in Ostend will occupy a crucial position to increase overall energy flexibility in the country, and it marks Centrica Business Solutions’ first battery development project in Belgium. The battery, situated on land at Ostend Basic Chemicals, will have the capacity to store energy and power 48,000 homes for two hours, enabling the grid to balance the peaks and troughs of renewable energy generation.

This project will participate in Belgium’s capacity market to ensure the country's long-term supply of power as it prioritises green energy and a commitment to shut down five of its seven nuclear reactors by 2025. Flexible energy storage is one of the most promising solutions to ensure long-term energy supply. With large-scale battery energy storage systems, it becomes possible to store renewable energy at times of abundance and release it again when the market demands it.

“We set an ambitious target to deliver 900MW of flexible energy assets by 2026, and to make good on this promise we’re becoming more active in developing and acquiring flexible assets at home and abroad,” said Bill Rees, Director of Centrica Energy Assets, said. “As the share of renewables in our energy mix grows, flexibility will be even more critical to ensure it is harnessed effectively while keeping the lights on securely and affordably. Belgium is becoming strategically important for us, and we’re excited to work with companies like Alfen to develop storage assets to help the country navigate the energy transition in a clean and sustainable way. We hope Ostend is the first step in many strategic renewable energy assets.”

Work on this project will begin in 2023 with the site set to be at full capacity by early 2024. Alfen will manage design, supply, civil works, installation, tests and long-term maintenance. Once operational, Centrica Energy Trading will employ a multimarket optimisation strategy to allow energy to be stored, then sold and deployed to the grid when supply outweighs demand or when there is a need for additional power on the grid.

About Alfen

At the heart of Europe’s energy transition from fossil-based to zero carbon to limit climate change by 2050, Alfen specialises in energy solutions for the future. Its integrated smart solutions are helping customers throughout Europe address their electricity challenges and achieve climate neutrality. Alfen continuously builds on its more than 85 years of innovation with its smart grids, energy storage systems and EV charging stations installed in some 30 countries throughout Europe. Alfen has been developing energy storage systems since 2011 with installations in nine European countries. For more information, visit us at www.alfen.com. Visit TheBattery Elements | Alfen N.V. to learn more about Alfen’s TheBattery Elements