TIRANA, March 13- Statkraft Albania has signed a contract with Norwegian company Ocean Sun AS for cultivating solar panels with a maximal capacity of 2 MW at the hydropower tank of Banje in Elbasan. The project will consist of four floating units with 0.5 MW capacity each, and the overall investment amounts to 2.3 million euros.
Statkraft is a leading company in hydropower internationally and Europe’s largest generator of renewable energy. The company which was born 120 years ago in Norway produces hydropower, wind power, solar power, gas-fired power and supplies district heating. The Group also deals with energy market operations. Statkraft has been present in Albania since 2007 and owns 100 percent of the Banje hydropower tank, which was opened in 2016.
Ocean Sun AS is a Norwegian company founded in 2016 to make a change in the solar industry, and potentially to the whole of the energy sector. The company’s vision is to provide the technology that rapidly makes clean energy production the cheapest alternative to large populations around the world, with the hope of conversion from fossil fuels to renewable energy. The new technology will enable large-scale solar developments on coastal seawater, lakes and reservoirs.
This is the first major commercial contract on floating solar technology from Ocean Sun. This project will demonstrate the implementation of a new technology developed based on Norwegian solar photovoltaics and maritime industry.
“Testing new technology for floating solar power panels fits very well with Statkraft’s strategy to grow our renewable energy generation from hydro, wind and solar. If the technology is proven successful and the potential for cost-competitiveness can be achieved, a wider application of floating solar may take place in other Statkraft locations”, said Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, CEO of Statkraft.
In December 2018, Statkraft Albania received a preliminary authorization from the Government of Albania for the implementation of a floating solar plant at Banja with a feed-in-tariff. Subject to final regulatory approvals, the solar plant will be constructed during 2019/2020.