EnergyVision provides Ostend Airport and 10,000 Ostend families with green power thanks to 66,200 solar panels
This autumn, energy company EnergyVision will install about 66,200 ultra-large solar panels on the grounds of Ostend-Bruges Airport, making it the second largest solar park in Belgium. In the first phase, the PV installation will have a total capacity of over 40 MWp and will thus make its own energy consumption, that of Antwerp Airport and that of almost 10,000 Ostend families 100% green. EnergyVision will install, maintain and finance the EUR 35 million installation. A big investment, but by saving of 9,600 tonnes of CO2, it will also bring considerable environmental benefits.
As of this autumn 2023, energy company EnergyVision will start installing about 66,200 ultra-large solar panels at Ostend-Bruges Airport. EnergyVision, which is in charge of the installation, maintenance and financing, is investing over EUR 35 million in the installation of the second largest solar panel park in Belgium. The total area of the installation is 303,864 m², equivalent to 61 football fields. The solar panels at the airport will account for an annual production of almost 37,000 MWh. The production of solar energy will also save 9,600 tonnes of CO2 on an annual basis.
The installation in numbers
Number of solar panels
35 million euros
66.200 of 605 Wp
Expected CO2 savings
Almost 37.000 MWh
9.600 ton per jaar
Green power for the airport and local residents
The energy generated will initially be used to supply electricity to the entire airport site. Thanks to this project, the airport can operate on 100% green electricity. However, with an annual electricity production of almost 37,000 MWh, the airport will generate much more electricity than it can consume itself. Therefore, part of the generated green power will be diverted to Antwerp Airport (Deurne), with the remainder going directly to local residents.
"Besides greening our own power consumption, the remaining energy we get from the solar panels will be able to be used by almost 10,000 families in the area. For us, it is important that our neighbours can also benefit from this," says Eric Dumas, CEO of Ostend-Bruges Airport.
The final touches are currently being made to the application for an environmental permit to install, in a first phase, over 40 MWp of solar panels on and around the airport. Construction is expected to start from September 2023. In a subsequent phase, energy storage capabilities will also be added.
Travellers will not be able to ignore it in the future: there will be large solar fields to the left and right of the runways, but the green character of the airport will also be visible and tangible on the way to the plane. There will also be kinetic tiles where travellers can generate their own electricity while boarding: this way, they will literally board the plane full of energy.
Co-investing in the project through citizen participation
The project will not only allow local residents to buy green electricity, but they will also be able to earn some money. Through www.stroomvantzeetje.be, individuals can co-invest in the project. "Soon, Ostend citizens - families but also SMEs - will be able to register and buy the generated electricity on a priority basis, at fixed prices, without any price increase, and for the long term. We are also setting up a platform for citizen participation: anyone who wants to can co-invest in the installation in the form of an eight-year loan with a fixed annual interest rate of 5%," says Maarten Michielssens, CEO of EnergyVision.
With this installation, EnergyVision wants to further strengthen its mission: making cheap, green, local energy accessible to everyone. For EnergyVision, energy transition should not and must not happen over the heads of citizens at all, quite the contrary.