By John Ensor •
Published: 11 Dec 2023 • 15:16
Image of a floating photovoltaic plant.
WITH mounting pressure to fund the renewable energy revolution, Portugal’s latest endeavour will go a long way to solving the problem.
The Portuguese government has initiated the contracting process for a ground-breaking project in Alqueva, marking a significant step in sustainable energy development, according to a report from La Informacion.
Announced on Sunday, December 10, by the Portuguese Government, the project involves a base investment of €45 million.
Set to be Europe’s largest floating photovoltaic park, it will be constructed in the Alqueva reservoir, nestled in the Alentejo region of southern Portugal, close to the Spanish border near Extremadura.
The initiative, facilitated by the Alqueva Development and Infrastructure Company, aims to establish four self-consumption production units and associated pumping stations as part of the Alqueva Primary Multipurpose Entrepreneurship Network.
This ambitious venture is poised to generate an impressive 90 gigawatt-hours annually, equating to sufficient energy for roughly two-thirds of Baixo Alentejo’s population, which surpasses 100,000 residents.
Harnessing the power of the sun, this energy venture will utilise floating photovoltaic panels. The panels, numbering around 100,000, will spread across approximately 42 hectares above the water’s surface.
The focus on self-consumption at the pumping stations underlines the project’s commitment to sustainability.
With an installed capacity of 52 megawatts peak, this solar facility is not just a symbol of progress but also a contributor to environmental preservation.
The government estimates that it will reduce CO2 emissions by nearly 30,000 tons each year. This initiative is a continuation of Alqueva’s legacy in renewable energy, where nine photovoltaic plants, including two floating ones, are already operational.
Portugal’s latest undertaking in Alqueva, the largest reservoir in Western Europe, represents a significant stride towards a greener future. The combination of innovative technology and environmental consciousness hold promise of a new era in Europe’s energy landscape.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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