The 11,520 solar panels in the solar power station of Compagnie nationale du Rhône (CNR) in Gramat (Lot département) have just produced their very first kilowatt-hours! This new farm illustrates CNR's commitment to the energies of the future alongside and in the service of the local authorities.
he project, winner of the national call for tenders of Commission de régulation de l'énergie (CRE) for large photovoltaic installations, was carried out by CNR in collaboration with local stakeholders:
- local and regional companies were in charge of the infrastructure;
- the farm is located on a former municipal landfill site, which has been rehabilitated by the municipality.
The first kWh were injected into the grid on 23 July, before the park's final commissioning in September, after the test phases. The Gramat farm will produce 7 gigawatt-hours per year, or the electricity consumption of 2,900 inhabitants, and will prevent the release of 4,660 tonnes of CO2. The development of the farm required an investment of €4.6mn. Caisse des Dépôts, a shareholder of CNR, will acquire a 50% stake in the project company in September.
Since the early 2000s, CNR, the main activity of which is the production of hydroelectricity, has been diversifying into renewable energies. It put into service its first photovoltaic power plant in 2008 on the roof of its Bollène hydroelectric power plant (Vaucluse département), and has since developed 28 solar power plants.
Today, CNR is considering new forms of solar farms:
- vertical solar ones, which use less land, with a project underway on the dikes of the Sablons hydroelectric power plant (Isère département);
- projects combining energy, agriculture and the environment, such as the solar park floating on the Madonna irrigation lake in Mornant (Rhône département).
In addition, as part of its resource diversification policy, CNR has developed several wind farms. Since the commissioning of its first wind farm in 2006 in Fos-sur-mer (Bouches-du-Rhône département), it now operates 48 wind farms.