Norway’s state-owned Statkraft, the world’s largest hydropower company and Europe’s largest generator of renewable energy, has filed a request to build a floating solar power plant in Albania, according to reports citing Albania’s energy ministry.
Statkraft, which produces hydropower, wind power, solar power, gas-fired power, and supplies district heating, has been operating its first hydropower plant (HPP) in Albania, the 73 MW Banja with an average annual production of 254 GWh, since 2007, according to the Norwegian company’s website.
It is on HPP Banja’s reservoir that Statkraft now intends to build a floating solar power plant. Statkraft operates HPP Banja on the Devoll river under a concession deal that also involves the construction of the 172 MW HPP Moglice, which is close to completion.
1st application to build floating solar power plant was filed by state-run KESH
Albania’s state-owned power utility KESH has also submitted a request to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy to build a floating solar power plant, with a capacity of 12.9 MW, on the Vau i Dejes reservoir, according to earlier reports.
KESH’s project proposal was filed in line with regulations on power generation facilities that are not subject to concession. The electricity that would be produced by the floating photovoltaic (PV) power plant would be sold on the free market.
According to KESH, the project aims at saving land surface and at the same time maximizing the exploitation of solar power. Moreover, the presence of the plant will have an impact on the lake ecosystem as it will prevent algae growth and improve the water quality, according to KESH.
The floating photovoltaic facility, which would be Albania’s first, would span 118,000 square meters, according to earlier reports.
KESH plans to build the floating solar power plant as part of efforts to diversify its energy mix, which is almost entirely dependent on hydropower plants. The Vau i Dejes reservoir is part of HPP Vau i Dejes, one of three HPPs in the Drin River Cascade.