A new regulatory framework for the development of large-scale solar projects has been presented in Portugal. It forms part of the country’s new state budget law, to be introduced in 2018.
Portugal has drafted a new state budget law for next year. As the local newspaper Observador uncovered, it mentions a new set of regulations which will apply to the development of large-scale solar projects.
Only very little information on new plan revealed
While it is only mentioned briefly, some detail gets revealed: The Plano Nacional Solar, as the plan is called, serves the purpose of creating „a remuneration scheme based on market prices, and without subsidies paid by consumers, through the national electric system“, as well as identifying ideal areas for the development of utility-scale solar facilities.
Meanwhile. Portuguese renewable energy association Apren asks for more auctions in the future. But whether these will be a part of the new plan is left in the dark. Some experts expect it to be a mere route towards a regulatory framework for utility-scale PV plants. It might result in a ban of incentives, like feed-in or regulated tariffs, affecting those large solar plants that use the grid-parity mode for their energy sales.
Portugal has registered PV capacity of 474 MW
By the middle of this year, Portugal had reached an overall registered PV capacity of 474 MW. However, reports from Expresso state that only 291 MW of these are currently installed. The major part, 166.6 MW, consist of microgeneration solar systems (up to 250 kW). In general, the country’s capacity is mainly formed by residential and commercial installations.
Portuguese solar capacity keeps growing
While all this is taking place, Portugal keeps adding to their current PV capacity. Local authorities have recently approved various utility-scale solar projects and one of them, a 46 MW solar park, is currently being built by Prosolia, a Spanish company. Portugal’s secretary of energy, Jorge Seguro Sanches, is very pleased about this development. „This is one of the plants that will be built without subsidies paid by the consumers,“ he explained on Twitter. Overall, 14 utility-scale projects were approved, or so local financial newspaper Expresso reports. The projects have a combined capacity of 521 MW and an estimated aggregate investment of 381 million euro. According to Expresso, they will all be constructed without any additional costs for the energy consumers.
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