Solar park Lange Runde

Statkraft has realised the largest ground-mounted solar park built in the Netherlands in 2017 on land owned by the municipality of Emmen. The site for the 14.2 MW ground-based solar parks is part of an area that was originally designated for greenhouses.

The greenhouses never materialised and the land was therefore temporarily used for agricultural purposes. As one of the first municipalities in the Netherlands, Emmen had written a policy for developing solar parks to help in the national energy transition. As owner of the land, the municipality of Emmen saw the benefits of receiving a higher lease income, as well as obtaining the benefits of locally generated renewable power.

While the first talks with the municipality already started in 2015, after having obtained the required SDE+ subsidy end of 2016, it took around one year to prepare for construction and construct the plant.

The solar park started delivering power to the local grid in December 2017. It will generate enough electricity to meet the annual needs of roughly 4,000 local households.

The solar park consists of 118,200 thin film First Solar series 4 panels with a rated power of 120 W each. Four SMA central inverters of 2.5 MVA each convert the generated DC power and feed into the local AC power grid. The solar park covers a surface area of 17 hectares and the tables with modules are just below 3 meters high at the highest point.

In light of its new strategy, Statkraft sold in September 2018 a majority of the shares in the solar park to a third party. The solar park is now majority owned by Blue Elephant Energy, an investment manager who acquires and manages wind and solar projects, mostly in North Western Europe. Aside from a remaining minority in the solar park, Statkraft will continue to be responsible for the local stakeholder management of the solar park, while Blue Elephant Energy manages and operates the solar park.