EnBW takes over 100% of DZ4; Ecoener switches on largest RE complex in Canary Islands; Citizens oppose 250 MW solar plant for Swiss Alps; GreenGo & Nordic Solar to partner for 250 MW solar in Denmark; Harmony’s 40 MW UK solar farm approved; Econergy hires EPC contractors for 172 MW solar in Romania.
EnBW acquires DZ4: German energy company EnBW has acquired 100% stake in solar rental company DZ4 in Hamburg. It already owned the majority stake in the company since June 2021 and has now become the sole shareholder. DZ4 provides home solar systems on rent since 2012 for owners of single and 2-family homes. Households can cover up to 70% of their electricity needs themselves under such a model without having to make any capital investment. “Solar systems and battery storage are at the heart of the private energy transition. DZ4 makes this possible for everyone with its rental model. This offer fits perfectly into our portfolio and into the current times,” said Head of Innovation and responsible for the development of new business at EnBW, Jürgen Stein.
100 MW energy park for Canary Islands: Spanish renewable energy company Ecoener has inaugurated what it calls the largest renewable energy generation complex on the Canary Islands with 100 MW wind and solar capacity. Located on Gran Canaria in the municipality of San Bartolomé de Tirajana (Las Palmas), the project comprises 8 wind farms and 12 solar PV facilities. The project has been built with €125 million investment to help avoid annual consumption of almost 20,000 tons of fossil fuels and will cover the equivalent of the annual electricity consumption of 54,000 families. By the end of 2023, the company plans to add another 51 MW of installed wind and solar capacity.
Opposition to 250 MW solar plant in Switzerland: Residents of Grengiols municipality in Switzerland are up in arms against the plan to build a 250 MW solar power plant on 5 sq. kms space on Alp Furgge in the Swiss Alps. While the facility is estimated to cover 0.5% of the country’s electricity needs annually, a citizens’ initiative called IG SAFLISCHTAL wants the project to be scrapped. Their argument is that the project will cover a major part of the mountain with some 1.25 million sq. mtr. of bifacial solar panels, along with several thousand tons of steel to put them up and hundreds of kms of copper lines for the cables. To get these materials up there, new roads and railway lines will need to be built creating significant geological risks. “The alp is currently farmed, around 50 cows and 40 young animals graze on the alp in summer. Several tons of cheese and Alp-Ziger are produced on site in five Stafeln (huts). With the solar project, alpine farming no longer has a future. Valuable agricultural land would be lost,” claim the citizens at a time agri-PV is quickly emerging around the world.
The initiative, comprising over 200 members so far, wants the Parliament to protect the landscapes while pointing at existing roofs and facades in Valais for a major solar offensive. The opposition is in contrast to the Swiss government wanting to give precedence to renewable energy over other interests to ensure security of electricity supply (see Switzerland Bats For 45 TWh RE Production In 2050).
Partnership for 250 MW solar in Denmark: GreenGo Energy has announced a partnership with Nordic Solar to co-develop 250 MW solar PV capacity in Denmark. Nordic Solar will acquire the project portfolio, and provide over DKK 1 billion financing through development and construction to commissioning over the next 3 years to 5 years. GreenGo will provide EPC services for the same. The 1st of the lot, a 32 MW solar plant in Odense municipality is scheduled to enter construction by the end of 2022 and produce 43 GWh annually.
40 MW solar farm approved in the UK: Richmondshire District Council in North Yorkshire has approved a 40 MW solar farm to be developed at Skeeby, East of Richmond. Harmony Energy is developing it as a subsidy free facility that will generate sufficient power for 11,500 houses. The company is also in the final stages of developing a major battery energy storage facility at Pillswood, near Cottingham in East Yorkshire. Once complete in November 2022, it is touted to become the ‘largest’ battery energy storage facility in the UK with a capacity to store up to 198 MWh of power to be fed directly into the network.
172 MW Romanian PV projects get EPC contractors: Econergy Renewable Energy has signed up Shanghai Electric Group and CHINTEC Group as EPC contractors for 2 of its projects in Romania with a combined 172 MW solar capacity. The Parau project in Brasov region with 91 MW capacity will be built by Shanghai Electric, and the 81 MW Oradea project will come up in Bihor region with CHINTEC Group. Both facilities are scheduled to come online in Q3/2023. Econergy said these facilities will form a part of its 1.5 GW PV pipeline under development in Romania and part of its wider 7.5 GW pipeline in Europe.