AN expanding Denbighshire renewable energy company has gone off-grid itself at its new headquarters.

Chris Ruane, MP for the Vale of Clwyd pressed the button as award-winning green energy installer Hafod Renewables fired up the power systems at its new base in Tremeirchion, near St Asaph.

It’s the latest move for the company which was founded nine years ago by Managing Director David Jones, then only 25, and his father, Richard, after they outgrew their premises on Denbigh’s Colomendy Industrial Estate.

Their new 4,000 square foot HQ at Pen Isa, near Tremeirchion, is four times the size of their previous home, boasts a solar array to provide heating, a battery to store the power and electric vehicle charging points outside as well as huge storage space for a company that has just taken on two extra staff and fits over £1.5 million of renewable heating systems a year.

Chris Ruane said: “What Hafod Renewables are doing here is fantastic. We want to see a green revolution in this country and it’s great to see North Wales companies like Hafod leading the way in this technology.

“I believe we should support them by ensuring that public projects have to adopt clean, green technologies for heating and power and that in North Wales there should be a commitment to use companies like Hafod on these projects.

“This is the future and I am delighted to see that in Hafod Renewables we have a company that was set up by a young man in his early 20s and it has grown and now has almost ten years’ experience in the field.

“I am very impressed by the way that they are not just in the business of fitting these technologies but that they also believe in them and use them – what better endorsement could they provide of their effectiveness.”

The system that Hafod have installed includes 20 solar panels on the roof, providing the power to run their offices with a Tesla Powerwall battery to ensure there is always an adequate supply – the system generates 11 kilowatts of power more than twice as much as the average home uses.

Former Holywell High School pupil David Jones, who has a degree in renewable energy, lives in nearby Trefnant where he and his family have also gone off-grid so that even their cars guzzle sunshine-generated electricity rather than gas.

All their heat and power is from renewable sources, much of it generated at home where Hafod has transformed the property with 16 solar panels, an air-source heat pump, a wall-mounted battery and an underfloor heating system.

The company now employs 11 staff, including an apprentice, and David said: “This move to new premises is part of our continued expansion which reflects the continued growth of the renewable sector.

“We’re delighted that our MP, Chris Ruane, has been able to come here and switch us on as he clearly shares our commitment to new, green technologies which are revolutionising home and working life today.

“Renewables are now major players in the energy field in the UK – in just a few years we will be getting most if not all our energy from ‘green’ sources.

“Solar energy has now made so many advances that it can stand on its own and compete against the traditional fossil fuel generated forms of power while the biggest part of our business is now air and ground-source heating systems.

“Air source in particular is very well suited to the home and basically operates like an air conditioner in reverse so that a heat exchanger uses the outside temperature, even if it’s -20C, to heat a house to a comfortable 22C or even higher.”

In the past 12 months Hafod have installed over 73 air-source systems and over 30 ground-source systems with a 16,000 hen egg producer and the North Wales Wildlife Trust among their customers.

They have also provided solar systems for 68 customers, the majority for businesses like Henllan Bakery in Denbigh, where the power of the sun cuts the cost of producing bread and cakes, dairy farms and even the world’s oldest heritage railway, the Talyllyn, where even though Welsh steam coal is still king, solar is now playing its part.

David added: “In just a few years almost everyone will be driving electric cars and by then most of our power will be produced by solar, wind, tidal and other renewables.

“Renewable energy isn’t a Cinderella-style operation any more. It’s a real contender and one with a better, cheaper long-term future than fossil-fuel or even nuclear generated power.

“Householders equipped with solar and battery are benefiting the most as they can charge their batteries with cheap electricity and use it in peak periods which not only saves their wallet but also helps stabilise the national grid.

“At times of high generation and low demand such as a windy, sunny Sunday afternoon the price of wholesale electricity can actually go negative which means the energy supplier pays you for taking electricity off their hands.”

Hafod Renewables installed their first system in July 2010 and since then they have fitted over 10,000 solar panels, stacked end on end they would tower over 29,028 foot Mount Everest.

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