Groningen based energy company Solarfields and Lowlands music festival organizer MOJO are going to build the biggest solar carport in the world. The solar park will be around 35 hectares (86 acres) and will cover the Lowlands parking area, providing festival visitors with covered parking and generating renewable energy at the same time.
Construction will start in November this year and the solar car park will be operational in May 2021, with a total of 90,00 solar panels. “If we don’t take any real measures soon, the younger generation of festival visitors are going to feel and deal with the effects of climate change and pollution in their everyday lives”, says Lowlands festival director Eric van Eerdenburg.
“We want to be part of the solution and contribute to a hopeful and optimistic future. Hopefully, we can also inspire our visitors to do their part in making the world a greener place, even with small gestures. About 12 years ago, we started looking for ways to make the festival more sustainable. The fact that we can now do this in a tangible and large scale way with Solarfields, is a long cherished dream come true.”
“We’ve closely collaborated with MOJO these past two and a half years, to tackle all the challenges you face with a project of this size”, says Solarfields CEO Jelmer Pijlman. “We’ve had a lot of support from governments and we’re really excited to be able to announce our plans. The location is perfect and the project is a great example of multi-purpose use of land: parking and generating renewable energy in the same location.”
One of the biggest challenges in making the Lowlands festival more sustainable, is the energy consumption. Every edition, around 300,000 kWh is used using old fashioned generators. The new car park with 90,000 solar panels, will generate an output of 35MWp, enough to supply 10,000 households with green energy or power 100 festival weekends per year. The biggest solar car park in the world will also be permanent and able to accomodate covered parking for 15,000 vehicles. This means an optimal usage of space.
Solarfields is a renewable energy producer and develops solar energy systems. The company from Groningen is a market leader in the area of large scale, land based solar parks. Solarfields develops projects for several types of locations, like rooftops, former waste dump sites and parking spaces, with the goal to make the Netherlands more sustainable and supply clean energy to 1 million households by 2030.