Singapore-based solar developer Sunseap Group has secured a contract to build what it says will be the world’s largest floating PV project on the Indonesian island of Batam.
The 2.2GWp project will cost US$2 billion and feature an energy storage system with a capacity larger than 4GWh to supply “non-intermittent solar energy 24/7”, Sunseap said. A portion of the energy will be consumed in Batam, while it will also be possible to export output to Singapore via a subsea cable.
Sunseap signed an agreement with local development authority BP Batam for construction of the plant, which is expected to span 1,600 hectares and generate more than 2,600GWh of electricity per year.
Construction on the plant is expected to begin next year and be complete in 2024. Sunseap said the installation will be financed through a mixture of bank loans and internal resources.
The installation will be built on the Duriangkang Reservoir, which was originally a saltwater bay and now provides more than half of Batam’s freshwater supply. Sunseap touted the potential of floating solar systems to reduce evaporation, while the cooling effect of the water will allow panels to generate more energy.
The project will be larger than a 2.1GW floating solar plant planned for South Korea’s Saemangeum Seawall dyke that is expected to be completed in 2025.
Sunseap’s work in the floating PV segment has seen it recently complete a 5MWp project in Singapore that has a power purchase agreement in place with Facebook.
“We believe that floating solar systems will go a long way to address the land constraints that urbanised parts of Southeast Asia face in tapping renewable energy,” said Sunseap CEO Frank Phuan.
During the Solar & Storage Finance Asia event earlier this month, it was suggested that given the proven ability to deploy large-scale floating PV plants, financing should be readily available for new floating projects across Southeast Asia.