As Masdar moves ahead with construction of its Cirata floating solar power plant in Indonesia, the company is looking to develop its floating solar portfolio in the Asia-Pacific region, Masdar President Director for Indonesia, Fatima Al Suwaidi, said this week in an interview with Asian Power.
Construction on the 145-megawatt Cirata floating solar photovoltaic (PV) project, the first in Indonesia, began in August and is expected to start commercial operation in the second half of this year. Once completed, the plant will provide enough electricity to power 50,000 homes and offset 214,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions.
“The Cirata project was our first investment in Southeast Asia, and it's not going to be our last,” Al Suwaidi said in the interview. The technology used in the Cirata project is “interesting and attractive to a number of other countries in Asia Pacific region that we know are looking into floating solar PV plants as a solution to the scarcity of land with expanding population,” she added. “So going forward, we're looking at growing a floating solar portfolio significantly in this region, given the need and the interest.”
This year, Masdar signed an agreement with Singapore’s Tuas Power, France’s EDF Renewables, and PT Indonesia Power to explore the development of renewable energy within Indonesia for export to Singapore. When asked about the impetus for the project, Al Suwaidi said: “We're looking into doubling down in key geographies and technologies we know very well. We seek long term bankable projects with clearly defined risk boundaries, as well as strong partnerships in the countries where we operate.”
"We rely on our expertise in Abu Dhabi which also extends across the globe. Our local presence and our ability to scale to make the right connections and find the right opportunities, wherever we find them. This specific opportunity with Indonesia and Singapore was established from the relationships between the countries,” she said.