Energy companies join forces for solar farm project

Engie, Neoen, RTE and the Saucats municipal unit have joined forces to integrate 1 GW in solar power with 40 MW of storage, a hydrogen plant, a fruit and vegetable farm and a data centre.

The project, located in France, will allow energy companies Engie and Neoen, the country’s power transmission system operator RTE and the local authorities at the small town of Saucats to build a 1 GW photovoltaic plant. It would be the biggest in Europe by far.

The €1 billion project includes Neoen’s 40 MW batteries to store electricity. Engie would run a 10 MW unit for the production of hydrogen from renewable energy.  The company is also responsible for the data centre subproject, worth 20 per cent of the investment and intended for digital services to businesses. It would partly be powered by the solar power plant. The proposed system has massive electricity production and consumption in one place.

The solar farm alone is envisaged to span more than 900 hectares and have a lifespan of 35 years. Its expected output is equivalent to the annual power consumption of 600,000 people and is valued at €650 million. The partners plan to start construction next year and get it online by 2024.

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