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EDP ​​Renováveis ​​opens Europe's largest solar power plant in Portugal

EDP ​​Renováveis ​​opens Europe's largest solar power plant in Portugal

The largest European solar power plant will be opened by EDP Renováveis ​​(EDPR) in Portugal. Created from the country's first solar auction, the plant is now complete after the power company won the lot in 2019.

The Circa solar PV plant, in the municipalities of Azambuja and Alenquer, in the Lisbon region, will be completed in 2023, with a total capacity of 202 MW.

The plant outperforms the 195 MW Przekona project in Poland, which also became operational in 2023.

The project will be officially opened next Monday, Jornal Economico (JE) has learned.

Contacted by Jornal Económico about this project, EDP Renováveis ​​declined to comment.

Despite the impressive numbers of European plants, they are still (slightly) lower than the company's Monteverde plant in Brazil that came online last year: 212 MW, the highest EDPR solar plant to come online in 2023.

However, you need to travel to Asia to find the company's largest solar power plant led by Miguel Stilwell D'Andrade, such as the 377 MW Sunseap plant in Vietnam, which opened in 2022.

Other relevant solar power plants are Pereira Barreto in Brazil (204 MW), Riverstart Solar in the USA (200 MW), or the 230 MW Sancip project in Singapore.

According to the newspaper, this factory, despite its completion, is currently in the experimental period, and has not yet entered the exploration period. Currently, it is subject to the market price, and will receive the 2019 auction price (€20.8/MWh), once it enters the exploration phase.

The power of the station’s connection to the grid is 142 MWVA, and the average annual production is expected to reach about 388,000 MWH, on an area of ​​744 hectares.

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The project will contain a total of 458,000 photovoltaic modules that will be installed in structures known as solar trackers, “which move on a horizontal axis oriented from north to south and automatically track the position of the sun in the east-west direction throughout the day.” In order to maximize energy production.

In June 2021, the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA) issued a positive Environmental Impact Statement (DIA), but provided that conditions are met.

“In view of the results of the development, and taking into account the identified negative impacts that are generally mitigable, and the expected positive impacts, a decision is issued in favor of the project, taking into account the terms and conditions imposed in this document,” the document states. APA opinion.

Before this project, the power company only had 13 MW of solar capacity installed in Portugal.

In 2023, the company also completed the Mont de Vez solar project with a total of 21 MW. Before this project and the Circa plant, there was only 13 MW of installed solar capacity in Portugal.

Globally, the electricity company installed more than 1.3 GW of solar PV in Portugal in 2023. Regarding wind energy, 1.2 GW was installed. In total, the electricity company installed a total of 2.5 GW of renewable energy (+ 1.8 GW compared to the same period) last year for a total of 16.5 GW.

Of the capacity above 16G, 80% is wind energy Wild13% solar photovoltaic energy, 5% decentralized solar energy, and 2% offshore wind energy. Last year, the company produced a 4% increase in electricity to 34,593 gigawatt hours.

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In the 2019 auction, 23 plots of land were allocated to 26 projects with a total of 1,300 MVA of connected capacity. In an assessment conducted for JE at the beginning of the year, the Ministry of the Environment stated that “all projects” had obtained production licences, with 22 receiving municipal building permits and 12 projects under construction, the latter representing a delivery force of 429 industrial value added.

Iberdrola announced in December that it had already completed all of its lots (seven) from the 2019 auction. The Spanish company Solaria also completed all four of its lots, as did the Spanish company Dos Grados (110 MW) and the French company Total Energy. (100 MW).

EDP ​​opens its second hybrid plant in Portugal

EDP ​​opened its second hybrid plant in Portugal on Monday, the company announced in a statement yesterday.

This plant consists of a solar power plant (Monte de Vis) installed next to an already operational wind plant (São João), allowing production to be almost doubled at this location.

The capacity of the wind plant is 23 megawatts, while the capacity of the solar power plant is 21 megawatts, and produces 79 gigawatt hours of renewable energy annually, which is enough to supply 23,000 families.

In this way, the project – located in the municipalities of Pinilla, Coimbra Region, and Ancião, Leiria Region – now includes 36,000 bifacial solar panels and 13 wind turbines.

The idea of ​​hybrid stations is based on making the most of solar energy during the day and wind energy at night to make the station’s operation profitable 24 hours a day, without the need for a connection point to the network with a power equivalent to the station’s energy, which may be less, because the factory’s energy will not produce 100% 24 hours a day. today.

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“We are proud to be pioneers again in Portugal and have commissioned the country's second hybrid park, taking advantage of the region's wind and solar energy to increase renewable energy consumption. This project is part of EDP's strategy to continue accelerating the national energy transition, both through investment in renewable energy projects New ones or improving those that already serve the regions they are located in. “We will continue to develop hybrid projects in Portugal and hope to implement another 700 MW in similar projects in the coming years,” Hugo Costa, head of EDP Renováveis ​​​​in Portugal, said in a statement.

EDP's first hybrid plant was opened in Portugal in January 2023, consisting of the Mina de Orgueirel photovoltaic plant and the Mosteiro wind farm, in the municipality of Guarda, with the capacity to supply 11,000 homes.

The company plans to develop more than 1,600 MW in hybrid projects in Portugal and Spain.