Deepening its expansion into non-hydro renewables in Europe, Norway's Statkraft has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) to buy electricity from five solar farms with a combined capacity of 252MW from Spain's Solaria.
The power will be supplied from three solar projects in the regions of Castilla y Leon in northwestern Spain and two in Castilla Le Mancha in the central part of the country for ten years, starting with the planned commissioning of the facilities next year.
The Spanish PPA for around 500GWh of electricity a year is part of a strategy by Europe's largest producer of clean energy to beef up its global non-hydro renewables portfolio.
“We will use this power to strengthen our position as a leading supplier of green power deliveries to major industrial customers on the Iberian peninsula,” said Carsten Poppinga, senior vice president trading & origination at Statkraft.
Statkraft plans to have 8GW of wind and solar in place by 2025. The company in October had acquired nine Irish solar projects with a combined capacity of 320MW, and holds a majority stake in the 1GW Fosen wind complex in Norway that will be Europe's largest once all of its sub-projects are operational in 2020.
Industry body SolarPower Europe believes the booming Spanish market might add up to 19.5GW of new PV by 2023 and is among the top seven PV market prospects globally, driven by supportive policies and emerging opportunities for corporate renewable power purchase agreements – such as the recent deal between Iberdrola and Nike .
“This agreement reaffirms our commitment to develop projects with very high quality PPAs that will allow us to access very attractive financing,” said Dario Lopez, chief operating officer of Solaria.
The energy produced by the five PV plants included in these contracts will reduce carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere by more than 101,000 tonnes a year.