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Largest solar panel plant in the country goes into operation

LARGEST SOLAR PANEL PLANT IN THE COUNTRY GOES INTO OPERATIONLocated in the municipality of Alcoutim, the Solara4 photovoltaic plant has already received the operating license from the General Directorate of Energy and Geology (DGEG) and will be the largest unsubsidised plant in Europe, according to a statement released this Sunday by the organisation.

The solar farm, located in Martim Longo, will have more than 660,000 panels installed with a unit power of between 330 watts and 340 watts, for a total of 219 megawatts (MW) installed and a grid injection power limited to 200 megavolts. 

It was licensed last September 15th by the energy authorities.

In a statement, the DGEG explains that “its operation will avoid the emission of 177 thousand tons of CO2 (carbon dioxide) annually and will make it possible to supply electricity equivalent to the consumption of 200 thousand homes”.

The new construction also has 40 transformer stations and 125 inverters with an available power of 1,600 killovolt-ampere (KVA) and is connected to the public utility grid through the Tavira substation, via a private 400 killovolt service line that connects the plant to the substation.

The infrastructure was subject to a favourable Environmental Impact Assessment and occupies an area of ??320 hectares.

According to DGEG, “it is essential for Portugal to achieve the goal of promoting the decarbonisation of the energy sector.”

The project, which is headed by Solara4, was iniciated in 2012 by the promoters, who two years later, in 2014, proceeded with the environmental licensing process with the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA).

In 2016, Solara4 delivered a guarantee of 4 million Euros to DGEG, in order to make the plant’s project become a reality. After having crossed several Governments and bureaucracies, the project is finally moving forward.