The construction of the solar park near Kikkenborg in Lemvig Denmark has been completed. During May this year, the park was connected to the public electrical grid, enabling now 4000 families to utilise its green power.
Jesper Pedersen, head of wind and solar in HOFOR, explains how solar energy has a growing strategic significance in HOFOR, whose goal is to reach 100 per cent carbon-neutral energy supply by 2025:
“Solar panels has become a competitive player in relation to wind, and it fits with our ambitious green strategy, which, among other things, focuses on fuel-free technologies. Additionally, solar energy is a great match to our wind farms, as the solar panels produce the most energy at times when wind turbines typically produce less; when the weather is calm and the sun is shining.”
The 26 hectares large solar park near Kikkenborg is located on a former crop field. The company is now looking for other large areas to use for solar energy:
“We are very interested in leasing areas suitable for new solar parks. In Copenhagen, the space is too tight, so it is crucial for us to locate suitable areas outside the big cities. Therefore, we wish to establish contact with farmers and others who would be interested in cooperating on utilising the areas for green solar energy”, said Jesper Pedersen.
Positive side effects for nature and groundwater
To HOFOR, the largest water utility company in Denmark, an important side effect of the solar parks – besides delivering green energy to the public grid – is the fact that the parks can contribute to the protection of groundwater and biodiversity:
“Between the solar panels in the park, flowers and other plants grow. This provides great conditions for insects and birds and protects the groundwater, as it is not necessary to use herbicides or other pesticides in the area. And since the rain keep the solar panels clean, the field will be completely free of any toxics or chemicals”, said Jesper Pedersen.
Carbon-neutral energy production by 2025
HOFOR’s goal is to reach an 100 per cent green energy production by 2025. As a part of the green transition, the company installs both onshore and offshore wind farms as well as solar parks. HOFOR has also established two large heat pumps, which utilises electricity from the sun and wind in the district heating supply. Carbon-neutral gas produced by wastewater, district cooling produced with seawater and geothermal heating from the subsoil are other parts of the fuel-free technologies that are to replace fossil fuels in the energy supply.
Facts on the solar park
The solar park near Kikkenborg accumulates to a capacity of 20 MW and consists of around 60.000 solar panels. The park is constructed by Better Energy, who also developed the project and are to operate the park during the initial years. The park is installed and operated with a partial subsidy scheme.
The location is partially surrounded by trees and a five-metres-wide green plant belt has been installed facing the existing road. The green areas in and around the solar panels are primarily maintained by grazing sheep. It is assessed that mechanical maintenance will be necessary a few times a year.