- Solar farms in Herlheim and Neusitz to go online in 2021
- BELECTRIC retains overall responsibility for project development, construction and operation
Tuebingen/Kolitzheim (Germany) – Stadtwerke Tübingen (the city’s municipal utility) has already taken on five solar farms from project developer BELECTRIC: Now number six and seven are to be added, including Herlheim – the solar farm with the highest capacity so far in the utility’s portfolio. The two solar farms will significantly increase the green power capacity of Stadtwerke Tübingen by a further 23 gigawatt hours (GWh) per year – which is a big step forward in the utility’s drive to expand its use of renewables. As its long-standing partner, BELECTRIC will develop and then install and operate the two solar farms as a service provider for Stadtwerke Tübingen (swt). Both new solar farms are due to go online in 2021. The green power produced by the two new solar assets will be sufficient to supply the equivalent of around 5,750 four-person households with climate-friendly electricity.
“These two solar farms are an important step forward in our expansion drive”, says Ortwin Wiebecke, CEO of swt. “It brings us a big step closer towards our goal of covering 75 percent of Tübingen’s total electricity demand with green power from our own plants by 2024. Solar power is accounting for an increasingly large proportion of our portfolio and has now overtaken wind power in terms of total output. Through long-term collaboration with partners like BELECTRIC, we are able to take on high-quality solar farm projects that deliver good power yields over long periods of time, thus contributing to the energy transition.”
BELECTRIC, one of the leading companies in the development and construction of utility scale solar power plants, has already begun to erect the two solar plants in Herlheim (13 MW) and Neusitz (8 MW). Worldwide BELECTRIC has realised more than 400 utility-scale solar plants. The swt solar farms Poehl, Grossenhain, Offleben, Burg and Seelow were also developed and installed by BELECTRIC.
Ingo Alphéus, CEO of BELECTRIC Solar & Battery GmbH, adds: “We are one of the few project developers with the required expertise to handle all of the construction work and subsequent operation of large-scale solar farms. Our engineers are involved at the early stage of choosing suitable sites and establishing the fundamental requirements for grid connection and plant design. Then we take responsibility for the construction phase and operation of the completed farm. This end-to-end expertise pays off for the client in terms of the high availability and performance of our plants over many years. We are glad to have signed a contract once again with swt on that basis.”
23 gigawatt hours of solar power per year will be added to the portfolio of Stadtwerke Tübingen
BELECTRIC will complete construction of the Herlheim solar farm near the Bavarian town of Kolitzheim (Schweinfurt district) by the summer of 2021. With around 13,000 kilowatt peak capacity (kWp) it will have the highest output of any solar farm within the swt portfolio. Its annual yield of renewable solar power will be around 14.4 GWh. Herlheim is the first swt solar farm to receive no EEG (German Renewable Energy Act) funding. The second solar farm in Neusitz will be built – also by summer 2021 – in accordance with EEG rules in the Ansbach district. It will have a total capacity of around 7,715 kWp and an anticipated power yield of around 8.6 GWh per year. Under a collaborative arrangement with a local energy cooperative which also runs a solar farm there, the infrastructure will be shared by the two partners. For both projects, an environmental concept for conservation of local flora and fauna includes an appropriate landscape management plan. Some examples of key elements of this plan are compensatory zones for animals like ground-nesting birds and the conversion of brownfield land into flower strips and biotope components.
As part of Stadtwerke Tübingen’s drive to expand its renewables capacity, the earnings from both projects will reap huge benefits for the municipal utility, as the amount of green power generated by swt will rise by 5.8 percent to make up 62.7 percent of Tuebingen’s entire power consumption. By adding the two solar power farms to its portfolio, Stadtwerke Tuebingen is ensuring more and more green power produced in southern Germany forms part of its overall capacity, with solar farms in Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg and wind farms in Baden-Wuerttemberg, (including plants in the Swabian Alps), now all supplying renewable electricity.