Photon Energy currently develops solar projects of various sizes totaling over 790 MW worldwide, of which 77 MW in Romania and 96 MW in Hungary, said Lauru Bădiță, Country Manager Romania, at the “Investments for Energy Transition” conference, organized by Energynomics, on 28 January.
For energy transition, Photon Energy group focuses on two lines of activity: clean energy and water – around which solutions will be developed in Romania and in all countries where the group is present. Its own projects portfolio is currently around 75 MW and will grow to 115 MW by 2022.
“In the energy area, we have developed our own portfolio area, operation and maintenance, with over 100 MW installed in the last year in photovoltaic projects,” said Lauru Badita. “Photon Water, based on a very good team of specialists, intervenes in various areas of water treatment using solar energy. We have global partners and we bring clean water to many places in the world, using solar energy. As a business model, we start from the project design, where we can make such technologies to become long-term investments, and end with commissioning and then operation and maintenance. We have tried to cover the full lengths of a business model and we plan to develop projects from the concept phase to the commissioning,” Bădiță said.
“We are developing projects totaling 790 MW, half of them in Australia. We are trying to use different technologies – from large-scale projects such as the three big projects, totaling 580 MW, where we worked with Canadian Solar – to installations mounted on the roof of the retail chains – we had a project with Aldi, or to battery-based installations – such as the project on the Lord Howe island.” Another 3 MW solar project was developed for water treatment in Wodonga, Australia.
“In Hungary we succeeded to install 61 projects of about 49 MW. We have 77 MW in early development stage in Romania and we hope to get the first projects up and running in 2022.”
Challenges of the Romanian market
Lauru Bădiță also referred to the challenges of the Romanian market. “Although our country’s 2030 target shows a 30,7% share of renewable energy in the energy mix, there are still some things to be done from a legislative point of view. I am thinking first and foremost of the possibility of concluding bilateral contracts outside the centralized market. Then, there are difficulties in purchasing agricultural land – the necessary amendments should be identified to allow the development of clean energy in parallel with agriculture. The option of buying land outside the built-up areas is very difficult, which also has an impact on our access to financing. Other important topics for investors are access to the grid and connection costs,” he said.