According to Imperial College London, and climate change group 10:10, rail, underground and tram networks could soon be partly solar powered.
The subsidy free powering system would allow the networks to supply around 10% of the electricity needed to power electric trains on the UK’s networks.
The plan would reduce strain on the current power networks allowing for further growth of renewable energy, rather than activating backup fossil fuel generation.
The combination of solar arrays and battery storage systems will reduce emissions and could also supply up to 6% of the London Underground rail network, where solar panels would be installed on disused land, station and depot rooftops, and car parks.
Chief of Quality, Health, Safety and Environment at Network Rail, Lisbeth Frømling stated: “Integrating renewable energy into the rail infrastructure would be a major step forward to reaching our goal of delivering a low carbon railway.”
“As one of the largest energy consumers in the country, we welcome this important research and the opportunity to collaborate with others to enable innovation.”