The downstream subsidiary of Taiwanese solar cell manufacturer Neo Solar Power (NSP) has been awarded a contract to build a 40 MW solar park in the country by clean energy developer Yong Yao Energy Co. Ltd.
To be situated in Taiwan’s ChangHua County, the installation is notable because it will be the first and single largest solar installation to be built using a 161 kV ultra-high voltage transmission line, and will be located on former farmland.
The solar farm will be built by General Energy Solutions (GES) in two phases, with the 15 MW phase 1 due for grid-connection by the second quarter of 2018. The site of the solar array sits close to Taiwan’s leading offshore wind farms, and boasts a terrain that is flat, dry and drenched in sunshine for much of the year. Thus far the region’s solar potential has been untapped, but as Taiwan’s solar industry begins to look inward, landscapes such as this are attracting more and more attention.
The support of the Council of Agriculture has also been pivotal in attracting the investment of Yong Yao Energy. Since 2015 the council has been proactive in declaring formerly unused farmland as no longer suitable for agricultural use – a move that has beckoned solar farm developers to the region.
Indeed, GES has acquired 80% of the development rights available on ChangHua’s 2,383 hectares of viable land, which means that the downstream EPC is poised to announce future solar projects in the county over the coming years, NSP said.
Financing is being obtained from Taishin Bank and DBS Bank, and once connected the 40 MW solar farm will meet the electricity needs of 14,300 local households.