GiraSolar to build biggest solar power plant in Turkey

The GiraSolar group, based on GiraSolar BV’s successful operations since its inception in 2003, builds upon decennia of solid solar experience accumulated by its team members in previous decades. Incorporating this experience the group has developed into an organisation combining the strengths of its subsidiaries, partners and affiliated entities, all predominantly active in the field of solar energy.

The company operates in the global solar energy market with activity spreading from the EU to the USA and to Asia, Africa and Latin-America. The group aims at incorporating excellence in problem solving at competitive quality and price levels. It combines the capacities of its subsidiaries, partners and affiliates, creating economies of scale for each partner and offering a complete spectrum of products and services to its customers. Since mid 2004 the group carries its own brand of GiraSolar modules, a range of GiraSolar electronic devices and hardware and carries 3rd party products from various companies, providing these partners a solid gateway to markets around the world.

GiraSolar has begun talks with a local energy firm to build Turkey’s first and Europe’s biggest photovoltaic solar power plant while also manufacturing solar panels for export to Europe. “We are planning to build Europe’s biggest solar energy plant in Turkey,” Chief Executive Officer Wieland M. Koornstra told.
The largest photovoltaic, or PV, power plants in Europe were Montalto di Castro Photovoltaic Power Station in Italy (84.2 MW), Finsterwalde Solar Park in Germany, (80.7 MW), Rovigo Photovoltaic Power Plant in Italy (70 MW), Olmedilla Photovoltaic Park in Spain (60 MW), Strasskirchen Solar Park (54 MW) and Lieberose Photovoltaic Park in Germany (53 Mwat the end of 2010.

According to the Turkish Renewable Energy Law, the purchase price for electricity generated from solar power is $0.133 per kilowatt hour. The law also offers a further incentive to renewable energy facilities and states that, provided the technical equipment used in the facility is produced within Turkey’s borders, the facility will be paid an additional $0.004-0.024 per kilowatt hour of electricity purchased by the state for five years after the plant becomes active.

“To produce 1 MW electricity we will need nearly 2,000 square meters of land,” said Koornstra. “We are in search of the most feasible location at the moment.”

Talking about the nuclear plant to be built in Akkuyu, in the southern province of Mersin, Koornstra said, “Turkey should use hybrid energy rather than relying on nuclear energy.” “They always told us that it was safe and stable and now it’s obvious that it’s neither safe nor stable,” he said. Koornstra said Germany and the Netherlands were facing storage problems for nuclear waste accumulated through the years. “They both stored nuclear waste in layers under the ground and they have leakage.”

Noting that hybrid energy sources such as wind energy and solar plants are safe and sustainable for the economy and environment, Koornstra said solar power had become more affordable in recent years, adding that such power presented none of the running costs, storage problems or maintenance problems of nuclear plants.

Recent research at Duke University has shown that solar energy production methods make the cheapest and least hazardous energy source that is cheaper and safer than nuclear power. The study said the cost of producing and installing PV cells had been steadily dropping for years and now cost about half of what it did in 1998. In the U.S., the price of nuclear energy through 2011 is expected to equal $0.16-0.18 per kilowatt while solar PV is forecast to cost $0.14 per kilowatt, the study said.