The generated energy will initially be used to supply electricity for the entire airport site. Thanks to this project, the airport can operate on 100% green electricity.
This fall, energy company EnergyVision is installing 66,200 solar panels on the grounds of Ostend-Bruges Airport. This will make the airport the second largest solar panel park in Belgium. The panels have a total capacity of over 40MWp. The airport is thus making its own energy consumption, that of Antwerp Airport and that of almost 10,000 Ostend families 100% green.
From the autumn of 2023 the energy company EnergyVision will start installing 66,200 solar panels at Ostend-Bruges Airport. EnergyVision, which is responsible for installation, maintenance and financing, is investing 35 million euros in the installation of the solar panel park. The solar panels at the airport will account for an annual production of nearly 37,000 MWh. The production of solar energy will also save 9,600 tons of CO2 on an annual basis.
Green power for the airport and the neighborhood
The generated energy will initially be used to supply electricity for the entire airport site. Thanks to this project, the airport can operate on 100% green electricity. However, with an annual electricity production of almost 37,000 MWh, the airport will generate much more electricity than it can consume itself. Therefore, part of the green power generated will be diverted to Antwerp Airport. The remaining power generated will go directly to local residents.
“In addition to greening our own power consumption, the remaining energy we get from the solar panels will be able to be used by nearly 10,000 families in the area. For us it is important that our neighbors can also benefit from this,” says Eric Dumas CEO of Ostend-Bruges Airport.
In a next phase, energy storage capabilities will also be added. EnergyVision and Ostend-Bruges Airport are also already looking into the further future. Here, the installation of kinetic tiles is being investigated whereby travelers can generate their own electricity as they step. In this way, they literally get on the plane full of energy.
More than 60 soccer fiels full of solar panels
The solar panels will be placed at three different locations at the airport. The two largest zones are located on the airport’s grass areas next to the runway. The third zone is located on aircraft parking Apron 2. The zone where passengers walk from the gates to the aircraft will be completely covered and roofed with solar panels. This allows passengers to walk to the aircraft in comfort even when it is raining and also generates energy. The total area of the solar park is about 303,864 m2. That corresponds to 61 soccer fields full of solar panels. Ostend-Bruges Airport thus becomes the second largest solar park in Belgium.
Sustainability objectives Ostend-Bruges Airport
In the context of sustainable development, Ostend-Bruges Airport wants to further commit to its sustainable ambitions and further develop into a modern mobility center. “Every new, green and innovative decision we take also has a positive impact on economic growth in the region. With this, the airport aims to create added value not only for travelers by focusing on smooth and fast service, but also for its environment,” said CEO Eric Dumas.
The introduction of solar energy at the airport is an important step to further reduce the airport’s carbon footprint. We are actively participating in the Airport Carbon Accreditation program, which aims to make airports worldwide carbon neutral by 2050. With this project, the airport is immediately taking a big step in the right direction.
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She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication & Mass Media from Panteion University of Political & Social Studies of Athens and she has been editor and editor-in-chief in various economic magazines and newspapers.