ADB to finance first large-scale floating solar PV in hydro reservoir in Vietnam

The Asian Development Bank has signed a $37m loan agreement with Da Nhim”Ham Thuan”Da Mi Hydro Power Joint Stock Company to finance the installation of a 47.5 MW peak floating photovoltaic solar facility on the man-made reservoir of the existing 175 MW Da Mi hydropower plant.

The project marks the first large-scale installation of floating solar PV panels in Vietnam and the largest installation in Southeast Asia, ADB says.

“This project will help to boost the share of renewable energy in Vietnam’s overall energy mix and decrease the dependence on imported fossil fuels such as coal,” said ADB private sector operations department deputy director-general Christopher Thieme. “The pairing of these two clean energy technologies ࢀ” hydropower and solar ࢀ” is a simple but a highly innovative achievement, which can be replicated elsewhere in Vietnam and across Asia and the Pacific.”

Da Nhim”Ham Thuan”Da Mi Hydro Power Joint Stock Company (DHD), a subsidiary of the Vietnam Electricity (EVN) Power Generation Corporation 1, owns and operates four hydropower plants: Da Mi, Ham Thuan (300 MW), Da Nhim (160 MW), and Song Pha (7.5 MW). DHD’s total generation capacity is 642.5 MW, about 1.7 per cent of Vietnam ‘s total capacity.

“We are proud to be the first company in Vietnam to construct a floating solar power plant on a hydropower reservoir,” said the chairman of the Board of DHD Nguyen Trong Oanh. “This project aligns with DHD’s strategy of investing in renewable energy to decrease dependence on fossil fuel, contribute to energy security, mitigate climate change, and promote environmental protection and sustainable socio-economic development. Hydropower reservoirs in southern Vietnam have vast solar power potential.”

The financing package includes a $17.6m loan from ADB’s ordinary capital resources. This is supplemented by $15m of blended concessional co-financing provided by the Canadian Climate Fund for the Private Sector in Asia and its follow-on fund, the Canadian Climate Fund for the Private Sector in Asia II. These funds were established by the Government of Canada to encourage private investment in climate change mitigation and adaptation projects in Asia and the Pacific.

The package also includes a $4.4m parallel loan from the Leading Asia’s Private Infrastructure Fund (LEAP), supported by Japan International Cooperation Agency through a $1.5b equity commitment.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6b.

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