Jing Bei New Energy said that for the past several years, it has been looking for innovative ways to integrate its PV technologies with a range of infrastructure projects. It claimed that the return on investment is “more attractive” with PV installations that are paired with aquaculture businesses.
“Dual-use solar power in fishery is an innovative approach and now a thing,” said a company spokesperson in an online statement.
The two companies did not reveal the location of the planned fishery installations. However, they did say that they expect the projects to produce 110 GWh of electricity per year, following completion. The undisclosed fishery businesses plan to generate additional income by selling the electricity from the PV plants to the national grid operator.
Jing Bei praised JinkoSolar’s frameless and backless panel design, which it says ensures durability at lower costs. It also said that it had looked for PV modules that could withstand the damp, potentially corrosive conditions of aquaculture projects over periods of 25 years.
Kanping Chen, chief executive of JinkoSolar, said that the company sees the potential to pair solar with agriculture and fishery businesses as a “huge opportunity.” Such projects played a key role in driving the development of distributed-generation PV installations — a key policy priority for the Chinese government — to roughly 2.43 GW in the first quarter of this year, according to the National Energy Administration.
JinkoSolar caused a stir in the global PV industry earlier this year when it signed a 25-year PPA to develop the 1.177 GW Sweihan PV solar array in Abu Dhabi with Japanese partner Marubeni. The two partners agreed to build the project for $0.0242/kWh, which is one of the lowest rates ever achieved for a utility-scale project in the world.
JinkoSolar continues to focus on new opportunities throughout the Middle East. Last week, the company — based in Shangrao, in China’s Jiangxi province — met with Saleh H. Alawaji, deputy electricity minister for Saudi Arabia and the chairman of Saudi Electricity Co.
By the end of 2016, JinkoSolar had an integrated yearly production capacity of 5 GW of silicon ingots and wafers, 4 GW of solar cells and 6.5 GW of PV modules, as of December 31, 2016. It shipped some 6.65 GW of solar panels in 2016, making it the world’s biggest PV module producer.