In 2022 Dutch energy company HVC will realise a solar park between the existing wind turbines along the Noordermeerdijk in the Noordoostpolder. With a capacity of approximately 100 MW it will be one of the largest solar parks in the Netherlands.
The Noordoostpolder municipality has designated the area between and immediately next to the wind turbines on the Noordermeerdijk to generate sustainable energy with solar panels, as part of its ambition to be energy neutral by 2030. These land are fragmented and therefore less profitable for agricultural use.
Since 2017, HVC has been working with governments and a group of 11 local land owners to further develop this idea for a large-scale solar park next to the wind turbines. In December 2020, the municipality granted the permit for the this Noordermeerdijk solar park, after no objections were raised. The SDE++ subsidy has also been granted.
90 gigawatt hours annually
200,000 solar panels will be placed in an area covering approximately 50 hectares. The solar panels are placed between the wind turbines in the NOP Agrowind Wind Farm. This wind farm, together with the nearshore wind farm Westermeerwind and the turbines of RWE, form the Noordoostpolder Wind Farm. They will generate around 90 gigawatt hours of green electricity annually. This is enough to provide the equivalent of 28,500 households with energy. The project is the largest solar project to date for HVC.
The initiators are investigating the possibility to connect the solar park to the existing grid connection of the wind farm. This is also called cable pooling. In this way, the generation of energy from wind and sun is combined, and sustainable energy can be generated in different weather types. This makes a considerable difference in the social costs and the lead time for the project, because no new network infrastructure has to be installed by the network operator.
The design of the solar park carefully takes into account the integration into the dike landscape, and nature. The park will have 9 hectares of additional green. The ditches between the solar fields will have a natural, widened bank which provides more space for aquatic animals, plants and shore birds. In addition, a green strip will be created between the dike and the maintenance road, which will be set up as natural and herb-rich grassland.
Local residents will be able to participate in the project through fixed-rate bonds. In addition, the solar park contributes to the sustainability fund of the Noordoostpolder municipality. Source photo: HVC