Largest Solar Plant in Central and Eastern Europe Opens in Ukraine
Kyiv, October 25, 2011. The 80 MW power plant in Southern Ukraine has opened its fourth, final line and will produce the annual 100,000 megawatt-hours of electricity. The Okhotnykovo solar power plant is the world’s fourth most powerful photovoltaic park after Canadian Sarnia, Italian Montalto di Castro, and German Finsterwalde.
The new power plant in Southern Ukrainian Crimea is capable of producing enough energy to meet the needs of 20,000 households. The work of the Okhotnykovo park will help save energy and protect the environment by reducing Ukraine’s carbon dioxide emission by 80,000 tons per year.
The solar power plant in Okhotnykovo, Crimea, is a part of the country’s national Natural Energy project. The State Agency of Ukraine for Energy Efficiency and Energy Conservation launched the project in 2010. It is aimed at producing electric energy from the green, “clean” sources – the sun and the wind – in the amount of 2,000 MW. The objective of this initiative is to supply the area of Crimea with electricity that requires low transportation cost, as well as preserve the environment of the region, making these areas even more attractive to tourists. The state agency expects the production share of alternative energy to make up to 30 percent of Ukrainian energy market before 2015.
The project executive – the Austrian company Activ Solar has just opened an office in the South Ukrainian megalopolis Odesa and stated the desire to further its activity in the region. Previously, the CEO of the Activ Solar Kaveh Ertefai said: “Project of this scale means a radical change of solar energy development in Europe, while securing Ukraine’s position as renewable energy provider.”
Ukraine has a great potential at the market of the solar energy projects. The solar radiation in the country reaches the capacity of 800-1450 W/m² per year. The southern regions of Ukraine have the highest potential for the solar energy production.
The main incentive for the growth of Ukraine’s solar Photovoltaic market is the so-called green tariff system, approved by the state in September 2008. The system introduced fixed feed-in tariffs for electricity from renewable sources for the period of 20 years.