- The investments for the construction of the two solar plants, Las Corchas and Los Naranjos amounts 70 million euros.
- In addition, a pioneering agriculture and apiculture project has been implemented between the photovoltaic panels of these facilities.
Endesa, through its renewables arm Enel Green Power España (EGPE), has completed the construction of the Las Corchas and Los Naranjos photovoltaic plants, located between the towns of Carmona and La Rinconada.
With an investment of 70 million euros and built in record time, the two photovoltaic plants will add a combined capacity of 100 MW and will generate 202 GWh a year, equivalent to the annual energy consumption of a town like Carmona.
In the light of the ongoing pandemic and in line with the indications provided by health authorities, the company implemented rigorous safety protocols, with the aim to ensure the necessary protection of the workers involved in the construction as well as to the communities where the plants are being installed.
Luca Capuozzo, Endesa's head of construction for Las Corchas and Los Naranjos, expressed his appreciation for “the efforts of all the workers and the coordination with the local authorities in Carmona and La Rinconada, who also made it possible for the province of Seville to produce cleaner energy today.”
Las Corchas and Los Naranjos have around 258,120 bi-facial photovoltaic panels, meaning that solar radiation can be captured on both sides, optimizing their utility. In addition, 14 transformation centers, two electricity substations and 45 kilometers of underground networks have been built to allow them to operate. This complex has today enabled the first megawatt of renewable energy to be generated, which has already reached the Andalusian electricity distribution network. The renewable energy produced by the two plants will avoid the annual emission of more than 94,000 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere.
What the build was like
For the construction of the two photovoltaic plants, Endesa implemented the latest technology in the field, such as using an exoskeleton to facilitate the installation of solar modules, security cameras to detect any safety breaches that occurred during the build, and integrated junction systems that made it possible to join photovoltaic modules without rivets.
In addition, Endesa is using virtual reality to monitor these plants through smart glasses, allowing supervisors to attend remotely without the need to physically visit the construction area. This technology also incorporates an infrared camera that captures in real time imagines of construction and implementation activities.
The construction of Las Corchas and Los Naranjos, Endesa followed sustainable engineering criteria and applied Enel Green Power's model of "Sustainable Construction Site", including the installation of photovoltaic solar panels to cover part of the energy needs during the works, efficient lighting, separation of waste, use of an electric vehicle to reach different parts of the plants, and the supply of several defibrillators to ensure workers' health. Now that the work has been completed, these measures will be donated to the municipality of Carmona for public use.
Endesa's philosophy for building its renewable plants is part of its “Creation of Shared Value” (CSV) program that has led the Company to run renewable training courses for more than 125 people from Carmona and La Rinconada, most of them unemployed, who now have knowledge in the booming sector of how to assemble and dismantle photovoltaic plants.
Within Endesa's CSV program, the company has also worked alongside local associations in assembling hardware or donating materials, such as pallets and cable coils, for occupational workshops in Carmona.
The start of construction at these photovoltaic plants marks the completion of one phase, but the beginning of another, as Endesa chose these facilities to develop a pioneering and innovative project - agriculture and apiculture in photovoltaic plants.
This project is based on three hectares of aromatic plants cultivated among the company’s photovoltaic panels in Carmona. This crop will allow the bees located between the panels to carry out their pollinating role, creating sustainable, solar-branded honey.
Endesa and the municipality of Carmona are interested in partnering[FOM(C1] with solar beekeepers in the region, as the beekeeping activity is not only a boost for the socio-economic development of the local community, but also a clear example of how to return agricultural use to land. The project is in line with Endesa’s concept of shared value and circular economy that the company is committed to replicate in all its renewable plants.