Government approves three solar parks in €81 million investment

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The Portuguese government has approved three new solar energy parks in Santarém without using subsidies from tax payers or consumers.

The €81 million project will be developed by Escalbis Solar and provide 145.5 megawatts of energy.

“The Government has already approved more than 1,000 MW of solar energy from which Portuguese families will not have to pay a single cent on their electricity bills, without ‘feed-in’ charges or production costs” states the Government.

The new solar parks aim to reduce costs in Portugal’s national electrical energy system – Portuguese consumers currently pay among the highest power tariffs in the European Union.

“Renewable energy, yes, but costs on Portuguese families, no,” said the Secretary of State for Energy, Jorge Seguro Sanches in a communiqué.

The three solar parks (Alforgemel, Casal do Paul and Encarnado) will be located at Almoster, in the Santarém district. According to the Government, each of these parks will have 161,000 photovoltaic panels with a total of 485,000 panels on the three sites.

The power generated by each park will be 48.5 megawatts with a combined installed capacity of 145.5 MW for the three parks.

One of the largest solar parks on the Iberian peninsular is located at Alcoutim in the Algarve on a 800 hectare site. The 200 MW photovoltaic park involving an investment of €18 million includes an innovative solar energy test platform covering 42 hectares, the project of Dutch entrepreneur Marc Rechter of Enercoutim – Alcoutim Solar Energy Association.