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OMV and VERBUND start up Austria’s largest solar plant

Dec 06, 2020
3 min read
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Austria’s OMV and VERBUND have started up the largest ground-mounted photovoltaic plant in Austria and are embarking on a test period of several weeks.

On a 13.3-hectare (133,200 m²) compound owned by OMV, Austria’s largest ground-mounted photovoltaic plant with a PV capacity of 11.4 MWp has been built in Schönkirchen, Lower Austria. The first phase of construction of the east-west facing solar park sees 34,600 PV modules produce around 10.96 GWh of solar power, corresponding to the annual electricity consumption of some 3,400 households and saving around 8,000 metric tons of CO2. Despite supply restrictions caused by the pandemic, construction work has progressed on schedule. By the end of 2021, in the final phase of construction, another 10,400 PV modules will be added to the plant. This will increase the total capacity to 14.85 MWp, generating around 14.25 GWh. This is enough to meet the annual power demand of 4,400 households in total and will save an additional 2,400 metric tons of CO2 per year.

“It’s been an honor to observe this project right from the groundbreaking ceremony and I’m delighted that the plant is up and running after just a few months of construction. The fact that projects like this are being built in the Austria mining sector – projects that combine competitiveness and climate neutrality – is both encouraging and motivating. The energy-intensive sectors in particular require innovative, climate-friendly solutions and this plant is an important step here”, said the Federal Minister responsible for mining, Elisabeth Köstinger.

“Together with VERBUND, we have started up the largest ground-mounted photovoltaic plant in Austria. The dedication shown by the entire project team has meant we could keep to the planned schedule despite challenging circumstances. Therefore, effective immediately, we can meet part of our energy demand with sustainable solar power. With this, we are contributing to climate targets and consistently delivering on our commitment to reduce our carbon intensity”, said Rainer Seele, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of OMV. 

“We’ve delivered our joint vision for the future of energy!”, said Wolfgang Anzengruber, VERBUND CEO. “In a construction period of just five months, Austria’s largest photovoltaic plant has been successfully realized by OMV and VERBUND and starts operating today. Cross-sector partnerships like this allow us to provide both economic stimulus and sustainable investments – and the current crisis should teach us that we also need to tackle the climate crisis by standing together”.

 “With the largest ground-mounted photovoltaic plant in Austria, two domestic giants – OMV and VERBUND – are sending a clear signal for a sustainable energy future and themselves making a key contribution to reducing emissions. Our goal is for 100 percent of electricity in Austria to come from renewable technologies by 2030. Meeting this goal will only be possible in cooperation with Austrian companies”, said Magnus Brunner, State Secretary of the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology.