Clean Energy

Seychelles’ resort island opens a 2.5MW solar farm

credit: Caribbean Journal

The Desroches Island resort in Seychelles just opened a 2.5MW solar farm which will power 90 percent of the island resort.

The president of Seychelles, Wavel Ramkalwan, and Patrick Berlouis, chairperson Development Company board of directors, officially opened the solar farm on Desroches. After the one on Ile de Romainville, a man-made island, the farm is the second-largest solar plant in Seychelles.

Desroches is home to a branch of the Four Seasons resorts chain, which makes use of about half of the electricity produced by the solar farm. Tourism is the most important economic engine on the Seychelles island, followed by agriculture.

Desroches Island, also known as Île Desroches, is the major island of the Amirante Islands, which are part of Seychelles’ Outer Islands. It’s 227 kilometers southwest of Victoria in Seychelles.

It stretches about 5.5 kilometers and covers a total area of 4.027 square kilometers. A fine sand beach runs the length of its 13-kilometer circumference.

The Island Developing Company (IDC) a solar farm, on Desroches is the company’s fourth and largest installation in the outer islands.

The resort manager Nick Solomon said: “This is a major adjustment for us. Four Seasons is committed to sustainability as a company, so having our resort run nearly entirely on renewable energy is something we are really excited about and glad to be a part of.”

He also revealed that the resort used roughly 55,000 gallons of fossil fuel each month when the generator was running and that with the solar plant, they estimate a 90 percent drop.

Glenny Savy, chief executive of Islands Development Company (IDC)“The only money that IDC invested was to create the pillar onto which the PV panels stand and the structure that contains the equipment. We’ve just bought electricity for $0.19 per kilowatt, down from $0.42 while the generators were running.”

Savy further stated that the 2.5-megawatt solar farm was developed by Sustainable Power Solutions (SPS), a South African distributed renewable energy provider, and was outfitted with software from Metal, a tech firm.

One of the organization strategies, according to Patrick Berlouis, head of the IDC board of directors, is to research and implement renewable energy projects on the islands in order to minimize fossil fuel usage and lower operational expenses.

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