Canadian solar energy company Grasshopper Solar is planning an $80m investment in Japan’s Iizuka solar plant owned by Setouchi Koken.

Founded in 1998 in Okayama, Setouchi is a civil engineering and construction firm engaged in developing and constructing photovoltaic (PV) solar plants.

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Located in Fukuoka, Iizuka solar farm is a ground mount project, which will be equipped with 65,455 solar panels and will have the capacity to generate 26,136MWh of clean energy, as well as offset 19,451t of carbon emissions per annum.

"We will continue to grow and execute on our existing Japanese pipeline of $1.2bn of solar projects."

Grasshopper Solar CEO Azeem M Qureshi said: “We are pleased to have made this milestone investment in Japan. We expect strong growth of our asset base as we continue through with our expansion plans into this market.

“We chose Japan given the country’s strong commitment to renewable energy reflected in public opinion and the regulatory and policy framework.”

The Iizuka power plant will be developed by Setouchi along with its Japanese partners and construction work at the site is expected to begin by the fourth quarter of this year.

It is expected to begin commercial operation by the third quarter of 2020.

Upon completion, Iizuka power plant will join Japan’s Feed-in Tariff programme with a 20-year contract from Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI).

Grasshopper Solar chief development officer Jonathan Persaud said: “We will continue to grow and execute on our existing Japanese pipeline of $1.2bn of solar projects.

“As our asset base continues to scale, our team continues to originate creative solutions, enabling projects to provide maximum value for all stakeholders.”