Paris – December 21, 2023 – European energy company Qair announces a significant achievement as it surpasses the 1 GW milestone of installed capacity reaching 1,4 GW in operation or under construction. This accomplishment is attributed to the recent successful commissioning of key projects in Brazil and Poland.
The start-up of the Serra Do Mato photovoltaic power plant in Brazil, alongside the Smallsol 21, Stoszowice I, Kalisz Pomorski solar stations, and the Stawiszyn and Widuchowa wind farms in Poland, has played a pivotal role in Qair’s accomplishment. These ventures exemplify the company’s dedication to sustainable growth and underscore its position as a key player in the global renewable energy landscape.
Pioneering the Future: A French Legacy in Renewable Energy
The group that would later become Qair traces its roots back to the entrepreneurial endeavors of its founder, French renewable energy pioneer Jean-Marc Bouchet, who established Energie du Midi in 1988. Over the years, the group has evolved into a major player in the French renewable energy landscape, from the set-up of JMB Energie in 2005 to the formation of Quadran Energies Libres through the acquisition of Aérowatt.
Beyond Borders: Qair Ascent and Rapid Portfolio Rebuild
Pressing forward in its evolution, the group broadened its horizons to become an international force. After the sale of its French portfolio to Direct Energie in 2017, the company undertook an ambitious venture, leading to a complete reconstruction of its entire portfolio of nearly 500 MW from the ground up three years later. Renamed Qair in 2020, the group has achieved the noteworthy milestone of 1 GW in installed capacity within a mere additional three years. Anticipating the future, Qair now envisions to triple its capacity by 2027, highlighting its commitment to sustainable growth and a significant role on the European stage.
A Sustainable Evolution: Qair’s Shift to Integrated Renewable Energy Solutions
As Qair celebrates its milestone of 1 GW in installed capacity, the company is embarking on a journey from being an Independent Power Producer (IPP) to becoming an integrated renewable energy company. Qair aims to offer comprehensive energy management services. Central to this evolution is a reliance on renewable hydrogen, in addition to battery storage and energy from waste. This strategic shift enables the group to effectively balance renewable energy output, ensuring a consistent and readily available energy supply.
Investing in the Future: Qair’s Focus on Renewable Hydrogen and Offshore Wind Technologies
As Qair charts its course toward a sustainable energy future, the company strategically invests in two pivotal technologies: renewable hydrogen and offshore wind. Recognizing the need for innovative solutions to address intermittency challenges inherent in renewable energy sources, Qair places a significant emphasis on renewable hydrogen. This technology not only serves as a crucial enabler for resolving intermittency but also supports long-distance transport of renewable energy and facilitates the indirect use of green electrons. Simultaneously, Qair is making substantial investments in offshore wind, viewing it as a key solution to challenges in onshore renewable energy development. Offshore wind projects not only generate electrons for immediate consumption but also play a vital role in powering hydrogen initiatives, aligning with Qair’s commitment to a diversified and sustainable energy portfolio.
Qair’s Vision for Green Hydrogen: Leveraging Abundant Renewable Resources
Qair is spearheading a visionary initiative in the realm of renewable hydrogen, recognizing the distinct potential it holds within the Green H2 market and the feasibility of viable transportation channels. The crux of Qair’s renewable hydrogen strategy lies in the establishment of large-scale production facilities strategically located in countries with abundant renewable energy potential, namely Brazil and Iceland. These regions, rich in solar and wind resources, provide an ideal backdrop for Qair to capitalize on the sustainability of hydrogen production through electrolysis. Moreover, the strategic positioning of production centers positions Qair to efficiently supply Europe with renewable hydrogen, facilitating the continent’s transition to a greener and more sustainable energy landscape.
The group currently develops a 7.5 GW pipeline of renewable hydrogen projects across several territories. In France, Qair is building the first French large-scale renewable hydrogen production unit with a 50 MW capacity -with a first tranche of 20 MW to be commissioned in 2025, in Port-La Nouvelle, Occitanie.
In Iceland, Qair has acquired a 50% stake in Íslenska vetnisfélagið, a subsidiary of Orkan, the only provider of hydrogen refueling solutions in Iceland. Two stations for trucks and passenger cars are already in operation in Reykjavik and four more are to be commissioned. Qair is also developing a 840-MW renewable hydrogen production unit with a first tranche of 280 MW to be commissioned in 2028.
In Brazil Qair introduced in November 2023 the GEH2® hydrogen generator, thanks to a collaboration between EODev, Qair, Air Liquide and CSI Gerpower. Made in France by EODev this generator commercially used for the first time in the country to power exhibition stands such as the one on the sidelines of the Energy Observer stopover in Fortaleza in November, paves the way to major events across the region to be powered by a clean and renewable energy source.
This first step announces the development of two massive renewable hydrogen production projects of 2.24GW each, located in the industrial ports of Pecém (Ceará) and Suape (Pernambuco) to produce green H2, and e-molecules to be used locally and exported to Europe. The projects will be mainly powered by Qair Brasil’s own wind and solar plants.
Qair’s Offshore Wind Advancement: A Multi-Local and Innovative Approach
Qair’s foray into offshore wind is underpinned by a dynamic multi-local strategy aimed at securing optimal sites for development. Central to this strategic vision is a focused knowledge acquisition, specifically centered on the advancement of floating projects. In navigating the competitive landscape, Qair positions itself as a trusted partner, leveraging its strength in consortiums, such as Thistle Wind Partners, which has secured a substantial 2 GW offshore wind project in Scotland.
As a testament to this commitment, Qair is currently advancing the Eolmed project, France’s largest floating offshore wind pilot farm, currently under construction. This initiative not only underscores Qair’s dedication to innovation but also positions the company at the forefront of France’s offshore energy landscape.
“This accomplishment underscores our commitment to sustainable energy solutions and solidifies our position as a key player in the global renewable energy landscape, says Louis Blanchard, CEO of Qair. I extend my deepest gratitude to our shareholders, our partners and collaborators for their unwavering support. Thanks to them, Qair is poised to continue deploying its strategy and ambition, actively participating in Europe’s energy transition.“
Qair is an independent renewable energy company developing, financing, building, and operating solar, onshore and offshore wind, hydroelectric, tidal energy, energy from waste, renewable hydrogen production and storage projects.
With more than 1 GW of capacity in operation, the group’s 600 employees are developing a portfolio pipeline of 30 GW in 20 countries across Europe, Latin America and Africa. Our ambition is to become an independent leader in responsible energy.
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