Pacific island solar plant from the heart


Following the government’s review of the Renewable Energy Target (RET) scheme, Conergy Australia has branched out into the Pacific Islands, with plans to build a 2MWp heart-shaped solar power plant in New Caledonia.

Named “the heart of New Caledonia”, the solar project will save an estimated two million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions across its projected 25-year lifetime, compared with fuel oil, gasoil and coal, which currently generate the majority of the islands’ power.

Conergy, one of the world’s largest downstream solar companies, will use 7888 German-made Conergy PowerPlus panels to generate enough electricity to supply 750 homes.

The project was commissioned by TIEA Energie, a subsidiary of local beverage company Froico SA. Conergy will begin engineering and construction (EPC) work in the coming months, partnering with local contractor AMBI Energy.

The unique design was inspired by the Coeur de Voh (heart of Voh), an area of nearby wild mangrove vegetation that has naturally taken the shape of a heart.

Conergy Australia managing director David McCallum said: “In Australia and the Pacific Islands, solar is competitive to build and attractive to finance, since operating costs are low with no fuel dependency. With all of the uncertainty in the Australian industry right now, the “Heart of New Caledonia” is a giant heart-shaped message to the government that it’s time to start loving solar.”

The project is expected to be completed in the first quarter of next year.