WindForce powers agro production with new 10MW solar power plant
WindForce PLC, the largest renewable energy developer in Sri Lanka, reinforced its commitment for greener energy choices by opening a 10MW solar power plant in Vavunathivu in May, and 15 MW Hiruras Wind Power Plant in Mannar.
Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera was the chief guest at the opening ceremony .
The construction of the 10MW ground mounted solar power plant started in September 2021 and was commissioned 10 months later. Being an agrivoltaic plant, Solar Universe is the first of its kind for the company, as well as for Sri Lanka.
Agrivoltaic plants combine the growth of agricultural crops with solar power production, optimizing the use of land to increase its efficiency.
Seeing that both solar power plants and agricultural crops need to be located in areas with access to ample levels of sunlight, the concept of agrivoltaic plants caters to the needs of the two sectors.
The Solar Universe plant, located in Vavunathivu, will consist of plots of land allocated to local farmers.
After considering the climate and soil profile in the area, crops such as peanuts, green chillies, beans, turnips and watermelons are already in the process of being grown.
This agrovoltaic plant supports the company’s efforts towards normalizing the use of renewable energy and creating a sustainable environment, in addition to increasing food production and creating a livelihood for the local communities.
WindForce PLC holds 33.33 percent stake in the new Solar Universe plant, which will additionally increase the company’s solar portfolio to 134.6 MW.
The company is simultaneously in the midst of constructing their latest wind power plant, Hiruras Power, in Mannar.
This 15MW (10+5) wind power plant is expected to be completed by the end of December, 2022.
This will increase the company’s wind portfolio to 84.2 MW. Overall, with the addition of Solar Universe and Hiruras Power, WindForce’s total installed capacity will increase to 245MW by the end of FY22/23 with an effective capacity of 146.5MW.
In the third Quarter 2021/22 financial results, the Group recorded a consolidated revenue of Rs. 3.6 billion, with Profit After Tax posting an increase of 4% to Rs. 2 billion from Rs. 1.97 billion YoY.
WindForce, which debuted on the Colombo Stock Exchange in April 2021, has since declared an unprecedented dividend pay-out of Rs. 1.76 billion.
WindForce, one of the first companies in Sri Lanka to enter solar power generation saw its foresight reap astute results when the solar sector posted a significant growth of 22% in the comparable nine months.
This was due to notable contributions by the newly commissioned Tororo Solar Plant in Uganda in August 2020 and the newly acquired rooftop solar plant, Sky Solar Ltd., in September 2021.