Lithuanian company Saulės grąža, which is developing solar energy, has completed the installation of solar modules near the building of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia in Tbilisi. Although the global pandemic has adjusted the plans and the pace of the works, the solar power plant will start operating as early as the end of April.
“Solar power plant construction works are already moving towards the end. After a detailed inspection, planning, design work, construction of the car park, installation of structures, we can be glad that the installation of the modules themselves has already been completed. The final stage, i.e. the final works of the 300 kilowatts (kW) solar power plant, its commissioning and installation of special monitoring systems, which will allow monitoring the efficiency of the equipment and evaluating the project results, is planned soon,” says Mindaugas Gerulaitis, CEO of Saulės grąža, when talking about the stages of the project “Transfer of Lithuania knowledge and experience for climate change mitigation by integrating solar power technologies in Georgia”. – However, there have been challenges. Due to the global pandemic, first of all, we were not able to go to Georgia to reconcile the details in real terms; we had to do everything online, then the installation of metal load-bearing structures was delayed, and the curfew in Tbilisi and other restrictions made the situation more complicated. However, we are pleased with the partnership based on openness and trust, which has made it possible to reconcile important steps and continue the planned work despite the disruptions.”
The financing agreement for the construction of the solar power plant was signed by the Environmental Project Management Agency (APVA) of the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Lithuania and UAB Saulės grąža in April last year. After the presentation of the project activities and the design of the planned model of the solar power plant, the contract works were launched: a surface parking lot was equipped, metal structures were installed, on which the modules were mounted.
The supervisor in charge of installing the modules near the building of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia proves that although the coronavirus has adjusted the plans, the completion of the installation work is smooth: “The installation works are performed taking into account and adapting to the current situation. Although there were some challenges at first – some employees had to isolate due to the illness before the modules were installed, logistical issues were severely disturbed, we returned back to the normal pace and now we see that we will finish the work soon.”
Benefit not only to the ministry
The installed solar power plant will help reduce the electricity consumption of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia. In addition, due to the change in electricity tariffs in the country earlier this year, it will also help save money. However, the installed modules will be useful not only for supplying the building with clean electricity. The modules installed on the surface parking lot create a shadow and thus protect the cars from overheating on hot summer days, as the works manager claims.
According to the CEO of Saulės grąža, the solar power plant near the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia in Tbilisi will not only promote the development of solar energy by transferring experience and sharing competencies in the field of renewable energy production and technology use, but also help reduce CO2 in the region. It is estimated that this gas would be reduced by about 3226,481 tonnes in 20 years.
According to the financing agreement, the total value of the project is EUR 383,730 (excluding VAT). Part of the project – EUR 240,376 (excluding VAT) – will be financed by the Lithuanian Ministry of Environment under the Climate Change Special Program. The Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs itself also contributed to the installation of the solar power plant. Its contribution to this project is the acquisition and installation of metal load-bearing structures.
This is the second project of Saulės grąža in Georgia. In 2018, during the project “Transfer of Lithuania experience and knowledge to Georgia by integrating solar energy technologies”, solar power plants were installed near Rustavi City Hall, a school in Tbilisi, Tianeti Regional Health Centre, a Kindergarten in Asureti, Tetritskar City Municipality, a Tianeti County school building.
Saulės grąža is the leading solar energy company in Lithuania. The company is engaged in energy development in Lithuania, the Netherlands, Mali and other countries, as well as in development and consulting in the field of renewable energy. Since 2012, Saulės grąža has implemented over 1,480 projects with a total capacity of 25 MW.
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