More than a third of UK businesses are now generating their own power as they attempt to cut spiralling energy costs, a new report reveals.

Solar power is the most popular way of generating electricity, with six in ten of the businesses who are moving towards becoming self-reliant having installed a photovoltaic system. Wind power is also a popular option, adopted by a quarter of self-generators.

The findings were revealed in a survey by The Economist, where 450 senior executives from manufacturing, transport, hospitality and retail companies were quizzed on their organisation’s energy strategy.

Simon Virley, UK head of power and natural resources at KPMG, called the trend of businesses generating their own power a “movement”, with big businesses such as Google and Amazon making attempts to run on 100% renewable power.

“In the UK, we’re starting to see similar ambitions among large retailers, particularly the big supermarket chains and, to a lesser extent, manufacturing companies, but that will come,” he added.

The Economist asked business leaders why self-generation had become a priority: nearly half (48%) of respondents said that it would cut costs, while 38% claimed it was part of an “eco push” within their organisation.

The economies of scale – brought about by the increase in renewable power adoption – have enabled the cost of renewable-energy generators, such as solar panels and batteries, to come down in the past few years. On top of this, there are also tax incentives, fully funded power purchase agreements (PPAs) and other benefits that firms can opt for, making renewable energy an economically attractive prospect.

The report follows a number of high-profile companies announcing self-generation projects. Nestle recently opened a nine-turbine wind farm in Dumfries and Galloway in Scotland, and Screwfix announced its first net-zero energy store in Peterborough.

We predict that this trend will only become more pronounced over the next few years and we will quickly reach a point where businesses who generate their own power are very much the majority and the norm.

Our team have been helping a diverse cross section of UK businesses generate their own solar power under fully funded solar PPAs for the last few years; these include food manufacturers & distributors, vehicle dealerships, schools and colleges. Find out how Zestec can help you meet your green energy goals by calling the team today on 01202 862760 or