Daily News Wrap-Up: EU Approves $6.7 Billion in Aid for France's Solar Projects

Here are some noteworthy cleantech announcements of the day from around the world:

The European Commission has approved a €5.7 billion (~$6.7 billion) aid program to support renewable energy generation from small solar installations located on buildings in France. The measure will help France achieve its 2030 target of producing 33% of its energy needs from renewable sources and contribute to the European objective of achieving climate neutrality by 2050. The program with a provisional budget of around €5.7 billion will run until 2026 and be open for operators of small photovoltaic installations located on buildings with a capacity of up to 500 kW. France expects to develop 3,700 MW additional solar energy with the aid.

Abu-Dhabi-based renewable energy company Masdar inaugurated the 100 MW Nur Navoi solar farm in Uzbekistan. Once fully operational, the plant will produce enough power for 31,000 households and displace 150,000 tons of CO2 each year. Masdar signed agreements in 2019 with Uzbekistan and JSC National Electric Grid of Uzbekistan to design, finance, build, own and operate the solar plant. The company established Nur Navoi Solar as the local project company to deliver the PV plant and to operate and maintain it over 25 years.

Statkraft, a producer of renewable energy, has inked power purchase agreements (PPAs) with Germany-based asset manager Aquila Capital for power from 111.6 MW of wind projects being developed in Finland. The PPAs are long-term, starting in 2022, in which Aquila Capital will provide Statkraft with 100% green electricity from two wind farms at Mastokangas and Korkeakangas. The wind farms are under construction and expected to be completed by the end of 2021 and early 2022. When completed, the wind farms will have a total installed capacity of 111.6 MW and are expected to produce more than 350 GWh of wind energy per year.


Denmark-based wind turbine manufacturer Vestas unveiled a digital platform, Covento, to provide a marketplace to connect buyers and sellers of parts and services from across various renewable energy technologies. The platform will list products and services from both Vestas and third-party sellers and facilitate the delivery of goods from both itself and third-party suppliers. The company aims to launch Covento in selected countries on the European market later this year and will be expanded to the U.S. and Canada in 2022.

Sarawak Shell Berhad, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, has committed to investing in the Timi gas development project off the coast of Sarawak in Malaysia with a solar and wind hybrid renewable power system. Timi, which is being developed with Petronas Carigali and Brunei Energy Exploration, will be situated 200 km off the coast of Malaysia. The company maintains it will be the first wellhead platform in Malaysia powered by solar and wind energy.