Finland’s first regional solar farm survey has been completed

NIHAK has been the first in Finland to conduct a regional-level survey on the interest of companies and landowners in building solar farms. The survey, conducted during last fall, shows that the region has significant number of areas suitable for solar energy investments in the region.

The region has significant number of areas suitable for solar energy investments.

In Finland, large-scale solar farms are being built at an increasing pace, and energy companies are looking for new land for their projects. In collaboration with the region’s municipalities, NIHAK has identified areas of 10–100 hectares that are suitable for solar farms. Already 25 different areas in the municipalities of Nivala, Haapajärvi, Pyhäjärvi, Kärsämäki, Reisjärvi and Sievi have been identified. Combined, these areas could produce electricity equivalent to the annual energy consumption of 60,000 detached houses.

“Energy companies are currently looking for suitable land for solar power projects. We have been contacted by ten companies of which eight are from Finland. Our job at NIHAK is to bring solar farm builders and landowners together,” says NIHAK’s Business Manager Kimmo Niskanen.

Niskanen says that landowners are also showing interest in solar farms. For them, solar farms are an opportunity for long-term rental income.

“We are constantly receiving information about new areas, and we already have a few projects in progress. We have only completed the first phase of the investigation, and landowners can still contact us,” Niskanen says.

The building of solar farms also has positive effects on the regional economy.

“Solar power projects bring significant investments. For companies in the region, the projects create various business opportunities, from infrastructure building to different services, including repair and maintenance services. In addition to generating tax revenue for municipalities, solar projects can also help municipalities reach their carbon neutrality goals and reduce emissions,” says NIHAK’s CEO Toni Krankkala.

The region benefits from good transmission links

The building of solar farms in Europe is increasing strongly.  In Finland, the rapid development of technology is speeding up the process. The output of individual solar panels has doubled over a brief period, and solar projects are increasing in size. A joint project by Skarta Energy Oy and Solarigo Systems Oy has just been confirmed for the region. In the project, solar farms with a total output of 75 MW will be built in Pyhäjärvi and Nivala on an area of about 160 hectares. The combined the size of the new areas mapped by NIHAK is 1,540 hectares. The solar energy potential of the areas mapped so far is about ten times bigger than these parks that will be built.

“One of the advantages of this area is the proximity of the electricity grids. The existing transmission links and substations built for wind farms or other construction needs can be used in the transmission of electricity,” Kimmo Niskanen says.

So-called hybrid farms that combine wind power, solar power and battery solutions are also an option. Solar and wind power can be produced side by side so that they complement each other during production variations.

More information: 
Kimmo Niskanen, Business Manager, NIHAK
Tel. +358 400 299 412

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