Solar Adoption Rise in the 2 Seas
Priority AxisLow Carbon Technologies
Low Carbon Technologies
Lead partnerUniversity of Picardie Jules Verne
Project budget4 302 023 €
ERDF amount2 581 214 €
Solar electricity generation has increased rapidly in recent years; in 2014 it accounted for 11% of EU renewable electricity (Eurostat), becoming the third largest contributor to electricity production from renewable energy (RE) sources in Europe. Solar is the most abundant of all RE sources. Yet it is perceived as prohibitively expensive (taking years before investment is returned) and problematic, as the electricity grid infrastructure struggles to cope with the variability of solar energy. There is little deployment of solutions like battery storage with solar photovoltaic that would offer grid balancing to enable solar to scale up.
Accordingly solar remains a small part of Europe’s energy system and does not achieve its potential in the 2 Seas Region. With consumer energy prices rising, there is a common challenge to reduce costs and improve applicability and efficiency of the technology, resulting in accelerated uptake and wider deployment of solar energy across the 2 Seas region.
The objective of this project is to facilitate the large-scale deployment of solar electricity/heat generation in the 2 Seas and support the EU to meet its target of 20% energy consumption from renewables by 2020. The consortium tests and demonstrates a series of innovative solar solutions on historical/public buildings and households (with focus on lowincome families) in both urban and rural settings. Each demonstrator reduces the cost of solar energy generation in combination with innovative storage technology to enhance efficiencies and greater use at point of generation rather than export to the grid.
SOLARISE brings together partners from business, academic and public sectors and citizens to stimulate change in the current situation and delivers a comprehensive business case that looks at future financing and investment opportunities in solar generation. Essentially the project helps drive CO2 savings, grid balancing and provide a means to reduce energy bills.
The main outputs of the SOLARISE project are a series of solar energy demonstration projects delivered across the partnership in both urban and rural environments and on domestic (with particular focus on low-income households) and public buildings (with focus on historical ones). The technology demonstration projects are evaluated and reviewed by partners to deliver an Economic Case and Strategy for the wide-scale deployment and replicability of solar energy with storage systems and provide a framework for commercialization of the technology throughout the 2 Seas Region. The partnership organises a campaign for stakeholders and deliver a Solar Roadmap to accelerate solar power adoption in pilot areas. It disseminates project results through conferences, tailored seminars, training events and via a solar energy dedicated web-portal. A guidepackage about legislation, market, technologies and best practices in the 2Seas is one of the outputs.
Cross border approach
The integrated approach of SOLARISE requires high-level cooperation; regionally (City-pilots), nationally (focus on legislation and rollout of project’s results) and across the 2 Seas Region. The added value of territorial cooperation includes several elements:
- much of the technology exists but is fragmented and little known
- solutions exist in one territory but not others
- business cases for solar energy production depend on the policy/legislative framework, offering cross border policy learning
- integrated approaches (e.g. storage) have high initial costs.To bridge the ‘valley of death’ partners need work together to promote innovations and increase demand.
Differences in scale, technology and organization across partners triggers active learning, cross-border cooperation and knowledge transfer. Hardware investments in different pilots makes knowledge development possible, supports demonstration & future decision making about solar power conversion, storage and grid connection.
The SOLARISE Project is co-funded by the European Programme Interreg 2 Seas. Its goal is to accelerate the adoption of solar energy in the 2 seas territories through innovative pilot solar installations.
This project brings together 12 partners and 14 observers with different but complementary profiles in France, UK, Belgium and the Netherlands. The University of Amiens is coordinating this project which started in March 2018 with a budget of about 4.5 million euros over 43 months.
Solar energy has a great potential of applications that are explored by SOLARISE:
1. Collective or individual roofs (for instance 3 buildings at the UPJV with 3500 m2 rooftop);
2. Facades of public or private buildings;
3. Industries often for self-consumption;
4. Solar farms.
Feasibility studies have already been done for rooftop installations on different type of buildings, on a heritage mill and for innovative living-labs including hybrid solar panels, storage and internet of things for monitoring.
These facilities will be implemented and the installations will be used as showcases for demonstration, training and R&D purposes.
The contextual framework of solar energy has also been analysed in the 4 countries from the point of view of legislation, market, technology and best practices.
The SOLARISE project organises several events that are open to public in order to share the solar potential in the 2 Seas Region.