Voltalia (Euronext Paris, ISIN code: FR0011995588), an international player in renewable energies, has signed a long-term power sale contract with Copel, a Brazilian utilities company. The new 260-megawatt solar plant will be located in Voltalia's Brazilian cluster of Serra Branca in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, the world's largest wind-and-solar site.
"Thanks to this contract Voltalia reaches 1.9 gigawatts of projects developed successfully in our Serra Branca cluster. This new success highlights the quality of our wind-and-solar cluster which attracts local utilities as well as international companies who want to source clean energy. With 0.5 gigawatt of further potential in Serra Branca and the development of our new 1-gigawatt Canudos cluster, together with other smaller sites, we are a leading renewable power producer in Brazil. I am very proud of the Voltalia teams and thank them for their engagement, especially in the present context" comments Sébastien Clerc, Chief Executive Officer of Voltalia.
Voltalia will build a 260-megawatt solar plant (SSM 3 to 6) and provide Copel with electricity through a 14-year contract, starting 2023. The SSM 3 to 6 projects are expected to be commissioned in the first half of 2022 ahead of the start of the long-term power sales agreements, with anticipated production sold under a short-term contract already secured with Copel.
Some of the construction works should take place at the same time as the SSM 1&2 solar farm. By pooling resources for SSM 1 to 6 Voltalia will achieve significant economies of scale at all stages, with ultimately the same O&M team servicing both solar plants.
A solid partner, well-known to Voltalia
Copel is one of Brazil's leading utilities, serving 4.7 million customer units in 395 municipalities and 1,113 localities (districts, villas and villages). A long-term partner of Voltalia's, with a minority stake in Voltalia's SMG wind farm (108 megawatts) since 2015, Copel was more recently one of the buyers behind the 238 megawatts contract signed for the SSM1&2 solar farms1. Copel is listed in São Paulo, New York and Madrid and its main shareholder is the State of Paraná.
Solar, a competitive source of energy
Solar now represents 0.5 gigawatt in Voltalia's 2.4 gigawatts Serra Branca site, the world's biggest wind-and-solar cluster. The two sources of power are complementary since wind is blowing mainly during the night at Serra Branca.
This new contract demonstrates the attractiveness and competitiveness of solar which cost has gone down considerably: -82% between 2010 and 2019 (source IRENA).
As of today, solar energy represents 20% of Voltalia's total installed capacity. The Company intends to further grow this technology in its 3 main regions, with an additional 1 gigawatt of solar capacity already signed.