Solar is one of the fastest growing renewable energy sources in the world. The installation of solar systems is increasing rapidly around the world as the countries step up their renewable energy efforts and attempt to cut carbon emissions from electricity generation. Solar PV generation increased 22% in 2019 and represented the second largest absolute generation growth of all renewable technologies.
As the world aims to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels amid the energy transition, several major economies including China and India are now looking to significantly ramp up their share in the technology.
India, which is home to many of the largest solar power plants has placed high hopes on solar delivering a large portion of its 450GW clean energy target by 2030.China currently holds the largest capacity share of the renewable technology, having brought about 40GW into operation in 2020, taking its total installed solar capacity to 240GW. China is also the world’s largest market for solar energy at present, as the country develops plans to neutralise its carbon emissions before 2060.
Here, are Asia’s three largest solar projects:
Bhadla solar pack is the largest solar park in the world as of 2020 and is spread over a total area of 5,700 hectares (14,000 acres) in Bhadla, phalodi tehsil, jodhpur district, Rajasthan, India. The park has a total capital of 2245MW. The park had witnessed the lowest bid for solar power in India as of December 2020 at (3.4¢ us) per kilowatt – hour.
The project is being developed in four phases, with Rajasthan solar park development company limited ( RSPDCL) developing the first two phases, Saurya Urja company of Rajasthan developing phase three, and Adani renewable energy park Rajasthan developing phase four. The total estimated investment on the project is Rs98. 5bn (¢1.4bn).
The solar park construction was started in July 2015 and the first phase was commissioned 2018. The second phase was commissioned in April 2019, while phases three and four were commissioned by March 2019.
The Huanghe Hydrpower Hainan solar park in China’s remote province is the second largest solar site in the world. The plant, which has an installed capacity of 2.2 GW, was built in fives phases and includes 202.8 megawatts (MW) megawatts-hours ( MWH) of storage capacity.
It was developed by Chinese state – owned utility Huanghe Hydropower development 15.04bn and came online on September 2020
The site is connected to an ultra-high voltage power line that is being built to connect the far north-western parts of the country to the more densely populated eastern provinces.
Shakti Sthala also known as Pavagada solar park, is a 2GW solar complex developed in pavagada, Tumkur district, approximately 180km from Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. The developers increased the capacity by 50MW.
The project was developed by karnataka solar power development corporation limited (KSPDCL), a joint venture between solar energy corporation in India (SECI) and karnataka renewable energy development limited (KREDL), with an estimated investment of Rs16. 5bn.
The solar park construction started in October 2016 and the 600MW first phase was commissioned in January 2018. The project will offset approximately 578,631tof carbon dioxide emissions a year.
Author: Tosin Kolawole