France’s 500 MW tender for large-scale solar concludes with average price of €55.5 /MWh

France’s Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy announced it has selected 77 large-scale PV projects with a combined capacity of 507.6 MW in its second tender for ground-mounted PV plants.

The tender, which was open to projects ranging in size from 500 kW to 17 MW, concluded with an average price of €55.5 ($64.9) /MWh. This is down from the price of €63.9 /MWh that was registered in the first tender of this kind, whose results were published in early March.

The ministry stressed that 87% of the selected projects have received financing through crowdfunding, and that these projects will receive an additional bonus of €3 per MWh.

Most of these PV projects will be developed in the southern regions of Nouvelle Aquitaine (139.1 MW), Occitanie (103.3 MW), Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur (54.8 MW). The eastern region of Grand Est had also a considerable share with around 74.2 MW of assigned capacity.

Projects selected in the auction are entitled to receive a “complement de rénumeration” under the new incentive mechanism introduced with the Energy Transition for Green Growth Law in August 2015. Under this mechanism, PV plant owners do not sell power to EDF or other power providers as under the FIT mechanism, but to the electricity market. These, however, are also entitled to receive an ex post tariff complementing the sale of power to the market.

The tender is the second of six 500 MW tenders for MW-sized PV projects announced by the French government in August 2016. The results of the next 500 MW tender will be released at the beginning of December.