Orange to open first European solar farm at French teleport

solar farm

Telecommunications company, Orange, has announcing the signature of a memorandum of agreement with Reservoir Sun, a leading player in self-supply solar electricity systems for companies and local government, to set up a photovoltaic power station in Bercenay-en-Othe (Aube). The station is due to go online in 2025.

To fulfill its environmental commitments, Orange said that it is increasingly turning to renewable sources of energy and wishes to accelerate this transition by making the most of solar energy on its tertiary and technical sites. The Group will therefore deploy its first solar farm in France and in Europe on the strategic satellite communications site at Bercenay-en-Othe. The farm will cover a surface area of 50,000 metres squared, or the equivalent of seven football pitches.

With an installed capacity of five megawatts (MW), the power station will supply 20 percent of the site’s energy needs and surplus electricity can be fed back to the grid. This locally generated, low-carbon electricity corresponds to the annual energy consumption of 1,700 homes and will save over 100 tons of CO2 every year.

The first milestone is the environmental impact analysis required to carry out the project, in agreement with the DREAL (Regional Directorate for the Environment, Planning and Housing). This study will be carried out over a period of up to 12 months, or four seasons, to determine the potential impact of the project on living species on the site. The study of the natural environment aims to minimise the impact of the facilities and to recreate, if required, species’ habitats.

“We are happy and proud to launch an ambitious local solar farm project at our Bercenay-en-Othe site,” said Michaël Trabbia, interim CEO for Orange Wholesale and International Networks. “This solar farm reflects our additionality approach and is fully in line with our strategy to develop the use of low-carbon energies, in order to contribute to our environmental commitments. This project thus contributes to securing our energy supply while decarbonizing our activities.”

“Reservoir Sun is very proud to have been chosen by Orange as a trusted partner for its first solar power project on one of its own sites,” said Mathieu Cambet, Managing Director of Reservoir Sun. “We hope that this shared project will mark the start of a strong collaboration to take on the challenges of decarbonisation and local energy production.”

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