By the end of this year, the Ukraine will be home to what is believed to be the largest solar power plant in Europe. The solar power farm is expected to produce up to 100,000 megawatt-hours of electricity per year, or 80 MW and makes it not only the largest in Europe but one of the largest in the world. The project is part of the country’s national Natural Energy project that was launched in 2010. Ultimately the country’s goal is to produce 2,000 MW of electricity from wind and solar energy or nearly 30 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2015.
Once the construction is entirely completed, the area of the power station will equal 207 football fields. The solar power produced should be enough to power 20,000 average sized households.
Austrian-based Activ Solar is in charge of the project, and company CEO Kavel Ertefai said, “A project of this scale means a radical change of solar energy development in Europe, while securing Ukraine’s position as renewable energy provider.”
The country funds its energy saving projects by the profits the government receives from selling CO2 under the Kyoto protocol. In 2009, revenues from CO2 sales to Japan alone were nearly $400 million U.S. dollars. Today, Ukraine ranks 12th in energy rankings with installed renewable energy capacity of 54 GW.