Solar power plant to be built on Swiss dam
A large solar power plant is to be built on a Swiss dam at Lake Lei. While the lake itself is located mostly in Italian territory, the dam belongs to Switzerland, which allows Swiss energy provider EWZ to build a solar array there.
Hydroelectric power in Switzerland
Hydroelectric power already provides a large part of Switzerland’s energy, but with the addition of a solar power plant, the dam at Lake Lei can provide more electricity than ever. While the cost of home utilities continues to rise, the Swiss government now is pushing to find new ways to produce electricity to keep the lights on this winter, one of the plans being adding solar panels to hydroelectric sites.
When completed, the plant would produce a total output of around 350 kilowatts - enough to power around 160 households. The project is expected to cost 800.000 Swiss francs.
Switzerland concerned about the possibility of an energy shortage
Switzerland has expressed its concern regarding the potential for electricity shortages in the coming year. Some Swiss cantons, such as Valais and Graubünden, produce large quantities of electricity, while others are at greater risk of a shortage in the coming months.
Switzerland’s authorities have also recently landed themselves in hot water with Italy, after a diplomatic spat arose when Switzerland suggested it may tap into a supply line running between Germany and Italy, to use the gas for itself in the event of a crisis. A spokesperson for Energy Minister Simonetta Sommaruga explained: "In this situation, of course, every country is considering a wide variety of scenarios, including extreme scenarios."