Iberdrola is moving forward with Europe’s largest Solar Plant in Portugal

The Fernando Pessoa solar project will be a 1,200 MW facility located in Santiago do Cacém, Portugal. Upon completion in 2025, the plant will be able to supply clean, low cost energy to cover the annual needs of 430,000 households, a population equivalent to twice the size of Porto. The facility will avoid the consumption of 370 million cubic meters of gas each year.

Construction of the Fernando Pessoa plant will generate up to 2,500 jobs and serve as an example of the coexistence of renewable energy and environmental heritage. The project’s action plan includes measures such as occupational skills training, promoting tourism, and providing solar energy to nearby communities. To improve biodiversity and environmental protection, the area will be used by local shepherds for grazing and beehives will be introduced.

Iberdrola’s Executive Chairman, Ignacio Galán, said that the solar farm sets a new benchmark in combining Europe’s clean energy ambitions with environmental and social benefits. Alejandra Reyna, Country Manager of Iberdrola Renovables Portugal, added that Fernando Pessoa will be a groundbreaking solar farm, on a scale that Europe has never seen before.

Portugal’s stable regulatory framework and efforts to advance the implementation of the European Green Pact are attracting investor interest in the country. Iberdrola plans to invest an additional €3 billion in wind and solar energy in Portugal over the coming years. At the end of 2022, construction was completed on the 46 MW Alcochete solar complex and other PV facilities. Construction will begin on several projects in 2023 and 2024, including the 83 MW Estoi solar plant, which will also include battery storage.

Last year, Iberdrola inaugurated one of Europe’s largest pumped hydroelectric storage systems in Portugal. The group also plans to build a 400-MW wind farm linked to the project, which will turn the complex into a hybrid power plant. Iberdrola also operates 92 MW of wind power in Portugal, producing 200 GWh per year, equivalent to the electricity used by 35,000 households.

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