Construction of a nine-acre solar farm on Kenyon Way and a hydroelectric plant at Charlestown Weir is scheduled to start next summer after the council signed a partnership to access funding for the schemes.
A total of 5,094 solar panels are planned for a plot of grassland west of Kenyon Way in Little Hulton. The work will take around five months to complete, after which the solar farm is expected to generate enough electricity to power 438 homes each year, according to Salford City Council. The scheme won planning permission in June.
Meanwhile, the hydroelectric installation at Charlestown Weir on the River Irwell, off Riverside Drive, is intended to deliver enough electricity to power 200 homes. Power would be generated by an Archimedes screw and the scheme would incorporate passes to allow fish and eels to swim further up the river.
It is expected to be built throughout the summer of 2022 and be operational by the end of that year.
The projects are part of a programme called Unlocking Clean Energy in Greater Manchester, which is being led by national renewables accelerator the Energy Systems Catapult, and the five Greater Manchester councils that have declared a “climate emergency”.
Under the three-year programme, the five councils – Salford, Rochdale, Stockport, Wigan and Manchester – will benefit from a share of £17.2m to bring forward underused local authority-owned sites for renewable energy schemes.
Salford City Council has now sealed the formal partnership arrangement with Energy Systems Catapult needed to progress the scheme. The deal means the council will be able to access expert advice and guidance, as well as European Regional Development Fund grants to plug any funding gaps.
Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett said: “I made a formal decision to partner with Energy Systems Catapult so we can continue with our plans to create a city prepared for the future.
“We are passionate about the environment and proactively looking at opportunities to help us achieve our long-term vision, which includes to be carbon neutral by 2038.
“The environmental crisis is the most acute threat facing humanity in the modern world. We must take radical action to mitigate the impact of climate change and Salford is leading the way.”