Major Malaysian utility Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) has started supplying power to the national grid from a part-completed 50MW solar power project in Selangor, Peninsula Malaysia, which will be the largest project in the country once completed.

The project, won in the government-led Large Scale Solar (LSS) auction by TNB’s subsidiary, TNB Sepang Solar Sdn Bhd, is located at Mukim Tanjung 12, Kuala Langat, south of the capital Kuala Lumpur. The proejct is set to reach its full generating capacity of 50MW before the end of this year.

The plant uses 230,000 solar panels and 10km of 132kV power and fiber optic underground cable, spread across 98 hectares of land. Work started on the plant in July 2017.

The EPC partner for the project was another subsidiary TNB Engineering Corporation Sdn Bhd.

Earlier this month, TNB announced a major new venture, a new zero upfront cost solution for rooftop solar PV for commercial and Industrial (C&I) customers and a similar solution for the residential segment will be available by year-end.

Malaysia’s Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Ministry has set a target of 20% of the country’s electricity to be generated from renewable sources by 2030, up from the current 2%. Around 53% of Peninsular Malaysia’s power generation is from coal, 42% from natural gas and 5% from hydro, together with other forms of renewable energy.

The country’s LSS programme has seen periodic 500MW solar auctions, the second of which saw 586MW(AC) of awards back in December 2017.

Malaysia’s intent to progress its renewable energy sector was made clear earlier this month in a number of announcements, including plans to install solar along a major highway, introducing both the first solar insurance scheme and monitoring system, as well as inking support agreements with powerful foreign organisations.

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