ENGIE and Solarge install largest circular solar installation at SABIC in Genk

ENGIE, Solarge, and SABIC have joined forces for a groundbreaking solar installation of 2.4 MW at the SABIC site in Genk, Belgium. What makes these solar panels unique is that they are 100% circular, weigh much less than traditional solar panels and are produced by Solarge in the Netherlands using SABIC materials. This project is a true milestone: never before has an installation of this size been built with these panels anywhere in the world.
13/05/2024

The innovative circular solar panels were developed and produced by SABIC and Solarge and they underwent extensive testing by ENGIE Laborelec, the Belgian research center of the ENGIE Group. ENGIE is also responsible for the installation, which will begin this summer, as well as the financing and maintenance of the panels. 

The installation consists of approximately 4700 panels that will be placed on the roofs of the SABIC site in Genk, Belgium. With a total capacity of 2.4 MWp, they will produce an average of 2000 MWh of green and local electricity per year, equivalent to the annual consumption of 667 households. SABIC will use 97% of the generated electricity for its own needs, covering about 5% of the local energy demand at its Genk site. Thanks to the solar panels, 800 tons of CO2 emissions will be avoided annually. 

The panels are manufactured by Solarge in Weert, Netherlands, using SABIC® PP compounds (polypropylene). These materials make the panels 50% lighter, making them ideal for roof structures with weight restrictions. Additionally, the CO2 footprint of these solar panels is 25% lower and they can be fully recycled after 25 years—which makes them truly circular. 

Vincent Verbeke, CEO of ENGIE Belgium: 

Innovation and partnerships are two key pillars in ENGIE’s approach to accelerating the energy transition. This project combines both and we are proud to support a global player like SABIC on their journey toward a carbon-neutral future. It also brings ENGIE closer to our goal of installing 300 MW of solar panels by 2030 across businesses throughout Belgium.

Jan Vesseur, CEO of Solarge

We are very pleased with the way we have developed these panels with SABIC and the ambitious start of the collaboration with ENGIE. The fact that ENGIE confirms that the sustainability characteristics of our solar panels represent an important step forward is for us a sign that we are on the right track. The roof of the SABIC location in Genk, where the granulate is produced that we apply as a replacement for the glass and aluminum in a solar panel, can carry a maximum extra load of 6.5 kg/m2. This is a fine example of a project for which there was no solution available until recently and where now a very sustainable solar power system will be installed.

Ana Maria Acevedo, site director SABIC Genk and Bergen op Zoom

As part of our sustainability strategy to play a leading role in the energy transition, SABIC is working with industry leaders in its field on innovation. Special about this project is that our site in Genk provides the materials for the production of the solar panels by Solarge. ENGIE makes it possible for us to use this electricity again. We are proud of this collaboration with Solarge and ENGIE and are convinced that this project is a fine example on our way to CO2 neutrality.

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Nele Scheerlinck

Press Officer
To contact Nele : +32 494 08 42 49
During the weekends, please use the following number : +32 2 518 60 20

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