August 6, 2018 / 10:32 PM / 10 days ago

France approves bids for 720 MW solar power projects

PARIS (Reuters) - The French government has approved bids for 103 solar power projects with a total capacity of 720 megawatts, the energy minister said on Monday.

The ground solar projects, which could provide power for around 100,000 homes annually, are part of the government’s plan announced in 2016 to add 3,000 MW of solar capacity to France’s energy mix by 2020.

Energy Minister Nicolas Hulot said in a statement the average price proposed by winners in the tender process was 58.2 euros ($67.24) a megawatt hour (MWh), down 5 percent compared with the previous tender round in July last year.

He added that two other tender rounds were expected with a capacity of 850 MW each.

France is racing to increase its wind, solar and other low carbon power generation sources so as to reduce its dependence on nuclear power generation which currently accounts for over 75 percent of its electricity needs.

Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Tom Brown

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