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China completes 200 MW solar facility on top of fish farm

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PV Magazine

The developer connected the massive installation to the grid earlier this month in eastern China, roughly 150 kilometres south of Shanghai.

Photo credit: Thomas Roche via Flickr

Photo credit: Thomas Roche via Flickr

The panels were mounted on piles above the surface of the Changhe and Zhouxiang reservoirs in Cixi, Zhejiang province.

The Hangzhou-based company invested approximately 1.8 billion yuan ($262.6 million) in the project, which spans about 299.5 hectares.

It did not reveal the solar panel supplier.

In an online statement, the Cixi municipal authorities hailed the project as a “new model” for solar-aquaculture projects, as the PV modules were deliberately spaced far apart to allow enough sunlight to penetrate the water, which is critical for the growth of the fish beneath the surface.

Construction started in late June and wrapped up in December.

The project is expected to annually generate about 220 GWh of electricity, or enough to cater to the needs of roughly 100,000 homes.

A unit of utility State Grid built two 110 kV substations for the project.

The installation is considerably larger than a similar 120 MW project that was completed last May in Poyang county, Jiangxi province.

Source: PV Magazine. Reproduced with permission.

  

  • Tomfoolery

    What is the benefit to having them on the water? Does it provide cooling to the panels, allowing a higher capacity factor of the solar farm?

    • Tim Buckley

      Reduced water evaporation, higher solar utilisation rates from panel cooling, no land cost, grid access etc

      • Tomfoolery

        Thanks Tim!

    • FIFO69

      Seems like this would mean a more expensive installation (as now they require more structure, probably a floating structure that required maintenance too) and difficult access for cleaning and maintenance of the panels all pointing to higher CAPEX and OPEX costs.

      Makes you wonder what environmental impact it is having on the ecological communities in the water that now are in shade 24/7 too.

      • Richard

        It’s a fish farm. Didn’t you read the article, they spaced the panels to allow for that. Sounds like you know more about the economics of the project than the company who built it.

        • FIFO69

          Are you suggesting it would be less expensive than a traditional on land solar panel system?

          • Richard

            No, why would I make such a dumb assumption. I didn’t do the economics on the project, I don’t know the surrounding land values, saving in water cost from reduced evaporation etc etc etc.
            Clearly it made sense in this situation and I bet there is plenty of other places where people will utilise the same idea. I know the British are putting up a huge PV array on the Thames. So there is just another example of where it makes sense.

          • FIFO69

            Ok so you assume it makes sense financially based on the fact that the project went ahead and the proponent made the investment decision based on a feasibility assessment.

            Then why is it that you assume that the Adani Carmichael mine in Australia is a poor choice? Sound like you have selective logic to push your own flawed ideology to me Richard.

          • Richard

            And you know zero about the project, are making things up and I called you out . Now you are trying to change the subject. You lose.

          • FIFO69

            Yes Richard very mature.

          • Richard

            You got what you deserved, over and out

          • Ren Stimpy

            There are a LOT of variables in the calculation of the feasibility of a coal mine. Commodity prices, labour costs, fuel costs, shipping and railing costs, plant and maintenance costs, and none of them can be safely predicted 6 months out, let alone 30 years out.

            Social costs and climate risk are growing in estimation as well – and this is not just do-gooder lefty talk either, it’s the actual risk that the Indian people living in smog drenched cities will demand that their government make a stronger shift to clean energy, and also the risk that for example the Europeans will put trade pressure on India to lift their climate action efforts.

            From what I can tell all the major lenders have walked away from financing the Adani coal mine, for the above (and probably other) reasons, am I wrong? The only ones who will lend money to this high risk Adani project now are you and I the tax payer, the decision having being taken for us by one Malcolm B. Turnbull. I think Malcolm needs to be asked, if he were back in his former role as an investment banker, would he risk his bank’s capital and reputation on a project such as the Adani coal mine? Is it somehow less of a risk seeing as the potential loss would be spread across a large number of tax payers rather than a smaller number of share holders? I mean what’s a trivial little $billion to dumb voters hey?

            Solar farm feasibility on the other hand is very easy to calculate by comparison, and they are minimal risk. No variables like commodity prices to worry about, no ongoing labour costs, no fuel costs, no ongoing shipping or railng costs. The plant costs are known upfront, the maintenance costs are very predictable, the cost of capital and insurance are also knowns. The total power output over 20 years is very predictable and sale price for that output is usually locked in via a PPA for 20 years.

            GreenTech/CleanTech stocks are going through the roof. It seems to me most fossil fuel stocks are up and down like a yoyo, possibly good for the short term high risk taker but not the Buffet style thinking investor, nor the tax payer!

          • FIFO69

            Sounds like you are buying into the anti Australian anti coal misleading propaganda being spouted at every opportunity by the likes of Tim Buckley, the ABC, the guardian etc. Is that where you are getting your “facts”?

            The truth is that the coal price is largely irrelevant for the Adani Carmichael project. They have an upwardly integrated business model, they own the mine and the transport infrastucture, port, ships and powerstations and will be getting the coal at wholesale prices the whole way without paying margins for the middleman.

            The anti-Australian propaganda machine seems to conveniently miss this point when slandering the economics of the project and pushing their “stranded assets” propoganda (csae in point Tim Buckley IEEFA) with the aim of misleading the public and discouraging investment in Australia.

            Adani are a large multinational company with connections to every major bank in the world and a definitive feasibility study that shows beyond the shadow of a doubt that the project makes financial sense and all necessary approvals in place (despite the vexatious, irrational, ideological anti-Australian activists taking every step possible to stop it). There is no question about finding the funding mate.

            Adani has has repeatedly stated that the project will proceed with or without the $1b loan from the NAIF to allow construction of the multi-use railway (which is specifically setup to encourage investment like this and you know, help Australia to grow our economy and benefit our people).

            Note that the NIAF loan is a similar arrangement to the deal that was done in the late 60s to construct the rail network for the Bowen Basin.

            We now have a coal mining province that provides $billions in revenue for the State and Federal Governments. Would you prefer that this was never built too and central Queensland remained flogged out cattle grazing country for the past 40 years?

            It is a well documented fact that Australia’s coal is better than India’s rubbish coal. If Australia’s coal is burnt and it offsets coal from other countries, that’s a good thing, despite the additional CO2 footprint of shipping.

            India’s new draft National Electricity Plan that shows that demand from India for coal will increase significantly (Section 9.3 page 9.11) it shows that demand for coal is projected to continue to ramp up in India to 677Mtpa in FY2122 and then up to 900Mtpa in FY2627. That is a lot, Australias total exports is about 400Mtpa. There is a clear demand for coal in India. We could literally double our coal exports over the next 10 years to meet this demand.

            Every tonne of coal from Carmichael will offset a tonne of rubbish Indian coal, resulting in reduced CO2 emissions and reduced global warming (and reduced impacts to the Great Barrier Reef).

            Also note every article you read on the falling cost of solar fails to mention the technology advancements in battery storage efficiency that is required to allow replacement of more traditional and reliable sourced of baseline power generation to occur.

            After all, the sun doesn’t shine all the time and the wind doesn’t blow all the time (or it blows too much or too little) and therefore the energy generated by sun and wind needs to be stored for future use.

            Did I miss anything?

          • Ren Stimpy

            Well you certainly covered the most important point which is that “the project will proceed with or without the $1b loan from the NAIF”. That is excellent news and the obvious choice for us now is “without”. I’ll write to Malcolm Turnbull and let him know we’re off the hook, and that they will go ahead “without” taxpayer money. Clearly an upwardly integrated, financially well connected company can finance their own railing infrastructure to the middle of Buttfucknowhere (traditional name Nuttinroundeerfella) “without” a donation from the Australian taxpayer. Who knows if it all goes tits up due to unforeseen circumstances such as, oh I don’t know, let’s pick something out the air, like say a decision by “India to Freeze Coal Construction and Focus on Expanding Renewables”, then the site could always become a world renowned tourist destination for extreme sunbakers, the new adventure sport.

            Just out of curiosity, is there any lithium in the Galilee Basin?

          • FIFO69

            Good to see your true anti-Australian ideaological, impractical, ignorant colours commie.

            The NAIF was setup as a major long term initiative of the Government’s White Paper on Developing Northern Australia (Our North, Our Future).

            Heres the white paper if you care to read it.
            http://northernaustralia.gov.au/files/files/NAWP-FullReport.pdf

            I guess development of Northern Australia is no priority to you. Based in a Sydney or Melbourne inner city coffee district I presume.

            Where did you get the information that India is planning to “Freeze Coal Construction and Focus on Expanding Renewables”.

            Sounds like you are relying on green propaganda to support your arguments again.

            As I stated earlier, India’s new draft National Electricity Plan that shows that demand from India for coal will increase significantly (Section 9.3 page 9.11) it shows that demand for coal is projected to continue to ramp up in India to 677Mtpa in FY2122 and then up to 900Mtpa in FY2627. This is the same government report that every green group jumps on to support their propoganda that renewables are booming and coal is dead in India. I downloaded it and read it. Did you?

            The fact is that India is moving 200 Million people from energy poverty to a better life, and they plan to burn a lot of coal mate…

            Would you prefer they burnt 900Mtpa of rubbish domestic Indian coal or 900Mtpa of high quality Australian coal (resulting in lower CO2 emissions) and helping development of northern Australia.

            Try to provide some facts in your rebuttal this time.

          • Ren Stimpy

            Did you try googling “India to Freeze Coal Construction and Focus on Expanding Renewables”?

            I love Australia. That’s why I’m against the government spending a $billion motza on one risky project for the benefit of one foreign company. “Socialising the costs” is a phrase that comes to mind, and you call me a commie! I’m a capitalist right down to the boots. Let private enterprise fund their own risky projects.

            According to you the project will still go ahead, the employment will still take place, the royalties will still come in, all “without” the socialist style funding. If we are going to have this type of funding, let’s spend it on projects that will benefit more Australians instead. Maybe some real infrastructure beneficial to people of the North and the Australian economy, infrastructure such as dams and irrigation, roads and rail in populated areas and not the middle of nowhere. How much of that good stuff could a $billion buy in the North? How many dams did this government promise on its way to power and how many has it delivered?

          • FIFO69

            Hi again
            I took on your recommendation and tried google as you suggested, it took me to an article referring the the Indian draft national electricity plan published in December by India’s Central Electricity Authority (CEA). The same report I mentioned 2 times in my prior comments.

            Funny thing is, the article took a pretty left view of the whole thing.

            It focused on all the proposed expansion in renewables but didn’t really mention the Section 9.3, Page 9.11 of the report which shows that there will continue to be a pretty heavy reliance and expansion of coal fired power generation as well, specifically the fact that coal demand is projected to continue to ramp up in India to 677Mtpa in FY2122 and then up to 900Mtpa in FY2627. Funny that… Glad your point was well researched though, good work son.

            Also with respect to your assertion that Australia should not fund the MULTI-USER railway under the NCIF, and that there is no benefit to anyone else other than those foreign Indian devils I suggest you explain that to the owners of all the other coal projects in the Galilee Basin that can potentially come online when the rail is built (which would then potentially employ thousands and allow the generation of wealth and higher standard of living for people in northern Australia).

            Why you are at it, perhaps you should call up the Federal Government and let them know that the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility Act 2016 and NCIF is only applicable to the projects you subjectively pick based on a misguided ideological anti-coal mindset.

          • Ren Stimpy

            Thanks for the suggestion, yes thx to you I’ve called up the Federal Government and let them know the Northern thing isand yak blah … but hey Austraya Day right ? FFS commie I love you mate but if you b;hlah I agree you little rascal you I’m aa bit pissed mate by now do we not agreeee FFS? You little beauty how the frick is my excelent typing crosss checked by pissedd me typeing?

  • Ian

    Nice story, land is a premium resource, which ever way you look at it, and to collect enough solar energy to produce a decent amount of electricity you have to cover a significant amount of land. We might not consider land area that important in our country but the Chinese probably do. When I drive through town and see wasted rooftops, railway line sky, uncovered pools, and walk/cycle ways, parking lots, it makes my heart weap.