In the western region of Spain called Extremadura, a $571-million 400 MW photovoltaic plant is being planned. Construction could begin in 2014 and should be completed in one year. Other than the large size, what is remarkable about this project is that it will receive no government subsidies. It is being planned by German and local developers. SAG Solarstrom is the German company. It makes photovoltaic systems for businesses, agriculture, and homes.
“This project will be a milestone nationally and in Europe. It will be the first of this size in Europe that will generate power without state subsidies,” said Oliver Guenther who works with SAG Solarstrom. The Badajoz-based Valsolar is its Spanish counterpart on the project. On its site, the company says Extemadura is experiencing a solar boom.
This area reportedly has one of the highest solar radiation levels in Europe. Due to these high levels, other solar power plants are also being planned there. For example, a 250-MW project from Gerlicher Solar is slated for construction in Talavan. Building will commence in 2013 and could create over 2,000 jobs.
Gerlicher Solar Espana CEO Guillermo Barea said, “I want to convey to the entire PV industry, not only in Spain but also in Europe, a message of optimism and that the sector can be competitive in the Electricity Market without subsidies. The Government support of Extremadura, our strategic capacity and the effort of my team are pushing this project to be viable in economic, technical and environmental issues.”
Extremadura is also known for producing Iberian ham, made from Wild Black Iberian pigs. These animals consume large amounts of acorns, which are believed to account for the meat’s flavor.
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