June 6, 2024

Hive Energy Connects Four Solar Projects With the Grid in Serbia

Hive Energy has successfully connected four solar projects to the grid in Serbia, totalling 215.6 MW. These projects, equipped with battery energy storage systems comprising 10% of their total solar capacity, mark a significant step in Serbia's renewable energy landscape.

The Solar Projects

The company, headquartered in the UK, has secured grid connections for four solar projects in Serbia, totalling 216.5 MW. Notably, the Pirot 50 MW and Prokuplje 40 MW projects are nearing completion of urban planning processes, with expectations to secure location conditions for photovoltaic and grid connections this summer.

Local media reports confirm that Pirot, a southern Serbian city, has approved the zoning plan to construct the Pirot 50 MW solar park. Spanning 57 hectares in the village of Blato, this project signals further advancements in Serbia's renewable energy endeavours.

The Hive Prokuplje Solar PV Power Project, a 48 MW project, is set to materialize in Southern and Eastern Serbia. GlobalData, a renowned power plant monitoring entity, indicates that the project is currently in the announced phase and will unfold in a single construction phase. The anticipated commencement of construction is slated for 2024, targeting commercial operation by 2026 across a 47-hectare expanse.

As for other developments, the Veliko Gradiste I and II projects, with respective capacities of 71.5 MW and 55 MW, are poised to transition to ready-to-build status by late this year or early next year.

500 MW Total Capacity With BESS

Each of these endeavours will integrate battery energy storage systems, constituting 10% of their solar capacity. Furthermore, Hive Energy aims to propose grid connections for seven additional projects, collectively surpassing 500 MW in capacity.

Last year, Hive Energy secured land for 490 MW of solar projects in Serbia, aligning with updated regulations for renewable energy expansion in the country.

During the latest Transmission System Operator (TSO) deadline in December 2023, the company submitted four grid applications for photovoltaic projects, supplemented by Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS). With capacities ranging from 40 to 71.5 MW (AC), these projects underwent TSO grid connection studies, marking significant progress.

Looking ahead, Hive Energy anticipates finalizing the next contract with the TSO, particularly the connection contract, by early June 2024, contingent upon submitting bank guarantees for grid connection.

Serbia's solar capacity reached 137 MW by the close of 2023, as reported by the International Renewable Energy Agency.

Serbia Collaborates with China For Solar Projects

In February, the Serbian government disclosed plans for its second renewables auction and recently forged a memorandum of understanding with Chinese company Hunan Rich Photovoltaic Science and Technology for a 200 MW solar power plant.

China has agreed to invest 2 billion euros in Serbia for renewable energy projects, marking the largest such investment in the Balkan country. The deal involves the construction of wind and solar power plants, as well as a hydrogen production facility. These initiatives, outlined in a memorandum of understanding between Serbian and Chinese entities, aim to enhance Serbia's energy infrastructure and contribute to its goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

The planned projects include a 1,500 MW wind farm, a 500 MW solar plant, and a hydrogen plant with an annual capacity of 30,000 metric tons. The energy generated will primarily be used to power operations at a copper mine owned by Zijin Mining, a Chinese company with significant investments in Serbia's mining sector. By leveraging renewable energy sources, Serbia seeks to bolster its energy security and reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.

China's investment in Serbia's renewable energy sector is part of its broader Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to enhance infrastructure and connectivity across Eurasia. This partnership underscores the growing cooperation between the two countries in the realm of clean energy, with Serbia poised to benefit from Chinese expertise and investment in sustainable development initiatives.

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