• Akuo Energy has commissioned a 17 MW floating solar power plant in Piolenc, France
  • The project uses 47,000 solar modules made using recyclable high-density polyethylene and Ciel & Terre’s Hydrelio technology
  • Financing for the project was arranged through crowdsourcing, Natixis Energeco and the municipality of Piolenc

With 17 MW capacity, France has not just got its first floating solar PV plant, it is even the largest such project in Europe till date. Akuo Energy commissioned the plant O’MEGA 1 on a lake in a former quarry in the French commune of Piolenc. The project had been under development since 2014.

European solar PV lobby association SolarPower Europe (SPE) said the PV plant will supply 100% renewable energy to 4,373 households. Akuo Energy used recyclable high-density polyethylene in the form of 47,000 modules with Ciel & Terre’s Hydrelio technology on 17-hectare water surface.

Akuo Energy arranged financing for the project through its crowdfunding platform AkuoCoop, along with Natixis Energeco and the municipality of Piolenc pooling in further resources. The company increases its renewables portfolio to close to 1 GW with this project.

Elsewhere in Europe, a 1.85 MW floating solar PV plant was announced to come up in the Netherlands in April 2018, and another 48 MW is being developed in the country by GroenLeven. In October 2018, Lithuanian company LEG sought EU support for a 60 kW floating solar pilot project in the country with plans to expand it to 250 MW (see Experimental Floating PV Plant In Lithuania).

As per Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables, global installed floating solar PV capacity is expected to reach a total of 2.4 GW by the end of 2019 (see 2.4 GW Cumulative Floating Solar Installed By 2019-End).