Frequently Asked Questions

Agricultural questions
What type of land is suitable for installing ground-mounted solar PV plants?

The most suitable sites have flat terrain and are at least ten hectares (100,000 m2) in size, with poor soil quality that is no longer suitable for agriculture.

Why should I use my agricultural land to generate renewable electricity?

The EU has set very ambitious targets to combat global warming and committed to making them legally binding. The targets include reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 (compared to 1990 levels) and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. As a carbon-free energy source, solar PV will play a significant role in achieving these targets. However, while rooftop solar PV systems are effective, they alone cannot meet Europe’s growing electricity demands. Therefore, it’s critical to utilize low-quality agricultural land to generate renewable energy on a large scale.

In addition, many European farms already produce energy in the form of biofuels. Alternatively, green hydrogen made using solar PV has around ten times the energy density of biofuel, making solar PV a far more efficient use of the available land area.

How much of my agricultural land will a ground-mounted solar PV plant cover?

We install our solar PV plants using simple ground-mounted frames. They are secured by pilings that are driven into the ground at specific points. As a result, only around 1% of the total land area is actually covered or “sealed” when installing a new project.

Can I continue farming my land with machines once the solar PV plant is completed?

This type of “dual-use” farming is not only possible – we think it’s a great idea. You are encouraged to continue your farming activities, provided the crops don’t shade the solar panels or have any other adverse effects.

Can I still farm livestock between the rows of solar panels?

It is possible to rear livestock on the same land as solar panels, although some breeds are more suitable than others. For example, Enery actively encourages (and even subsidizes) sheep farming and beekeeping, both of which work well in tandem with solar energy generation.

Do ground-mounted solar PV plants impact agriculture, biodiversity, or wildlife habitats?

Unlike most forms of energy generation, ground-mounted solar panels have a minimal impact on their surroundings, and can actually enhance plant and wildlife habitats. For example, the shaded areas beneath the solar panels can provide refuge for many animals during the hot summer months. In addition, ground-mounted solar PV plants are often ideal environments for keeping bees, as the absence of pesticides can vastly improve their health and honey quality.

Can I still use the area for hunting?

The solar PV plant provides a safe refuge for local wild animals, and hunting is not permitted on the properties that house our systems. In Austria, however, these areas a technically classified as private hunting grounds.

Roof vs. ground-mounted installations
Why is it better to install ground-mounted solar panels in a field than on a rooftop?

While both systems produce 100% clean energy, studies have shown that installing solar panels solely on rooftops will not be enough to reach the EU’s and national climate targets.

What advantages do ground-mounted systems have over roof-mounted systems?

It is far cheaper to install ground-mounted solar panels in open fields than on rooftops, as the fixed costs such as planning, connection, and documentation are the same regardless of the system size. This means that larger solar PV plants benefit from economies of scale and produce clean energy at a significantly lower cost.

In addition, many rooftop PV systems are obstructed by shade or do not have the right pitch or orientation to work efficiently. Ground-mounted PV systems do not have these problems as we can design the mounting frames to maximize the system’s energy generation throughout the year.

Is government support needed to install or operate ground-mounted solar PV plants?

Unlike rooftop solar systems, ground-mounted PV plants don’t require state support. This means they produce clean electricity without relying on taxpayer funding.

What advantages do ground-mounted solar PV plants have compared to other forms of renewable energy generation?

Solar energy is free, renewable, creates no noise or emissions, and requires very little maintenance. Solar PV plants also have lifespans of up to 40 years, making them reliable clean energy sources that are completely safe for people, animals, and the environment.

Solar PV Contracts and Agreements
Why is it necessary to have a preliminary agreement before construction begins?

Undertaking a solar PV project requires significant work on Enery’s part, including planning, documentation, permitting, and many other considerations. Therefore, we ensure there is a preliminary agreement in place during the planning stage to protect the interests of both parties.

What does the usage and easement agreement entail?

We typically lease land for 30 to 40 years, which is the lifespan of a solar PV plant. The rental payments you receive for your land are adjusted for inflation over the contract term. As the landowner, you retain sole ownership of your property for the duration of the leasing agreement.

What happens to the solar PV plant at the end of the usage and easement agreement?

If the two parties decide not to extend the agreement, we will remove the solar PV system in its entirety and you are free to repurpose the land.

Do solar PV plants need maintenance? Am I responsible for any other costs?

While the solar PV plant is in operation, the surrounding area must be mowed and maintained to prevent shade from reducing performance. As the system owner, Enery performs all of this work and covers all associated costs.

What happens to the solar PV plant if Enery were to go bankrupt?

In the unlikely event of a bankruptcy, a receiver would assume administrative control of the solar PV plant. After restructuring the debt, the receiver would likely continue running the plant, either directly or by selling it to a new owner. In rare cases, the receiver may sell the plant’s components (such as panels, inverters, and mounting frames) and use the funds to completely remove the system, enabling you to repurpose the land.

Why is Enery entitled to transfer rights and obligations to various third parties?

As a solar developer, we need this right to advance our projects successfully. We finance our solar PV plants using equity and debt capital, the latter of which can only be obtained by pledging certain rights and securities to the debt providers.

Project-Specific Questions
What form will my solar PV project take?

Our solar PV plants are ground-mounted in large open spaces. We install the solar panels on steel framing systems arranged in several neat rows.

What happens to the electricity generated by the system?

The system feeds electricity into the local power grid in the same way as a traditional power station. To achieve this, we ensure your site already has a suitable connection point in the immediate vicinity.

Will the solar PV plant be fenced off?

Yes – to ensure that unauthorized people do not have access to the solar PV plant. As the system generates large amounts of electricity, the fence also maintains safety and helps to prevent damage or theft.

How long will it take to install the solar PV plant?

We work to install every solar PV plant as quickly as possible, regardless of its size. As a result, we complete most projects within six to eight months.

Will you protect the appearance of the surroundings, such as by screening off the plant?

As a leading solar developer, we make every effort to satisfy the requests of all parties involved. Therefore, on an individual basis, we determine whether the solar PV plant needs to be screened off and make any necessary arrangements.

Questions About Solar PV Technology
Are solar PV plants environmentally friendly?

Yes they are. Unlike traditional fossil fuel power stations, solar PV plants create no noise, greenhouse gases, or pollutants of any kind. The energy used to manufacture the solar panels is also recouped within their first few years of operation, meaning they have a negative carbon footprint. In addition, improvements in technology and scale continually reduce the amount of energy and materials needed to make solar panels, and they are now also completely recyclable.

How long does a solar PV plant last?

The life of a typical solar PV plant is around 40 years, which corresponds to the duration of your lease. As the system owner and operator, Enery is responsible for decommissioning and removing the plant at the end of its life.

Do solar PV plants have any adverse environmental impacts?

With no noise, emissions, or moving parts, solar PV plants have a minimal impact on their surroundings. They blend in well with the landscape and require no major earthworks or land disruptions. Compared to other forms of renewable energy generation such as wind or hydropower, solar PV plants also help to increase biodiversity and create new animal habitats.