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Barolo Project Starts Construction Phase

First Climate Solar Investments' 43 photovoltaic plants go one-by-one into construction

In Piedmont, Italy, the first three photovoltaic (PV) plants of the Barolo project have been physically constructed and, after electrification and inspection by the grid operator, can go into full operation. This marks another significant milestone for the pioneering renewable energy project developed by First Climate’s spin-off company, First Climate Solar Investments (FCSI).

The "Barolo portfolio" comprises 43 PV plants generating a total output of around 29 MWp, which will be installed primarily on the roofs of commercial buildings. This makes Barolo one of the largest projects of its kind under the Italian government's current FER1 solar subsidy program (related article). With the mechanical completion now of the first three plants with a combined generation capacity of around 1.85 MW, the project has reached the final stage of project development. By mid-2023, all the PV plants are expected to be connected to the local power grid. They will collectively generate around 35 GWh of renewable solar power per full year of operation. This places the project right on schedule, despite the current constraints on the procurement of materials and construction supplies.

"As a result of the growing number of rooftops now being fitted with solar panels, many companies in the proximity of our installations are also taking notice of the project and our related activities. We have already received several serious inquiries from interested parties who also want to make their roofs available and use the affordable solar energy themselves," Julian Schirm, Business Development Manager at FCSI, is pleased to report. An expansion to include further portfolios is in the pipeline for the coming year.

Attractive power supply conditions for participating companies

There are concrete advantages for companies participating in the project. By buying the electricity they generate directly, they can secure attractive conditions for their direct-use power supply, which are currently significantly lower than local electricity costs. Especially for the manufacturing industry, demand peaks can also be leveled off and additional costs can be reduced. In the case of the asbestos found on the associated rooftops, FCSI will take care of the removal and cleanup and an incentive annual lease payment is created for roof owners.

This is also reflected in the PV plants that have now been completed: one of the plants is used solely for direct consumption by the company on whose property the PV plant was erected (no planned feed-in to the public grid). The remaining plants, on the other hand, feed most of the green electricity they produce directly into the public power grid as planned. In these cases, the roof owner profits as well, but only through leasing the roof or roof renovation.



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