The hydro-floating solar hybrid project at Sirindhorn Dam in Thailand. (Photo: EGAT)
Thailand’s UMC Metals and Singapore-based New Energy Capital Asia have signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) for a 1.6 MWp solar project in Thailand featuring floating and ground-mounted solar installations.
New Energy Capital Asia is a provider of corporate and industrial solar energy solutions, while UMC Metals is a player in the metals industry. The project is slated to power UMC Metals’ operations and help speed up the firm’s sustainability development.
According to this 15-year agreement, New Energy Capital Asia will design, construct, and operate the solar project, aiming to produce an estimated 2,400 MWh of green energy annually.
The partners target to collectively reduce carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 1,860 tons every year. The PPA deal is deemed as “transformative”, and the companies see the collaboration as “a significant advancement in Thailand’s renewable energy landscape”.
Furthermore, a significant portion of the project will feature floating solar panels (FPV), to capitalize on Thailand’s abundant water resources for efficiently and sustainably generate electricity.
The country claims to own the world’s largest hydro-floating solar hybrid project, a 45 MW power plant located at Sirindhorn Dam in Ubon Ratchathani. It’s the first pilot project of EGAT to combine solar and hydropower in order to mitigate limitations of power generation reliant on weather conditions.
New research by Rystad Energy indicates that floating solar is primed to play a key role in Southeast Asia’s solar expansion, overcoming limited land availability and offering an opportunity to increase renewable energy generation without deforestation.
Currently, operational FPV projects in Southeast Asia amount to around 500 MW in total, and according to Rystad Energy’s data, an anticipated 300 MW of FPV capacity is expected to be added across the region early this year alone.