Home Health France in the “Gigawatt club” with the largest photovoltaic park in Europe

France in the “Gigawatt club” with the largest photovoltaic park in Europe

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Belgium’s large chemical industries and refineries have joined the competition, but France is also heavily committed to green hydrogen. The Macron government has recently launched its National Hydrogen Council, in which four ministers collaborate, with responsibility for finance, the environment, industry and innovation. They were joined by the leaders of the French industry, including Edf, Total, Airbus, Air Liquide and Alstom.

France’s national hydrogen strategy plans to invest 2 billion by 2022 and 7 billion by 2030, when it expects to have 6.5 gigawatt electrolyzing capacity. Engie, in particular, has just signed an agreement with Total to develop and operate what will be France’s largest green hydrogen plant, with a 40 megawatt electrolyser that is expected to produce up to 15 tons of green hydrogen per day.

Located in a Total biorefinery in the southern region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur and powered by over 100 solar megawatts, the project, dubbed Masshylia, has already requested funding from the French and European authorities, with the aim of starting construction in 2022 and to start green hydrogen production in 2024.

Renewable transition

France, like other European countries, is in the midst of the transition to renewable energy and has just increased its installation target to 44 gigawatts by 2028. Saucats is part of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of France, which has a solar capacity target for 2030 of 8.5 gigawatts, but only 2 gigawatts installed. This project, therefore, will significantly help it reach its target for 2030, covering 15% of the planned installations alone.

Interestingly, in trying to initiate an open and community-centered approach, the key partners – Engie, Neoen, the network operator Rte and the Municipality of Saucats – first presented the project to the National Commission for Public Debate. (CNDP), which has decided to hold a public debate with members of the community to make them “participate in the development” of the mega-park.

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