09.October 2020

Saarbrücker Zeitung about info event Hartungshof

Above the Hartungshof in Bliesransbach, a citizens' solar park is to be built on 20 hectares of farmland. The Saarbrücken-based company Greencells, the Bliesgau biosphere association and the Köllertal Citizens' Energy Cooperative (BEG) presented the entire project last Tuesday on the Hartungshof. 30 citizens were present. Although there were many questions, especially regarding the financial side of citizen participation, not a single critical voice was raised against the project. "This is a different time than 15 years ago and we have to do something in the direction of renewable energy. But nothing has been decided yet. The final decision on whether the Citizens' Solar Park will come has the local council", said Rainer Lang, the mayor of Kleinblittersdorf, during the event. 15 years ago, Shell wanted to build a solar plant on an area twice as large above the Hartungshof. At that time, shreds were literally flying in Bliesransbach. There were even death threats against members of the local council. For a year there was no other topic and in the end the plant was rejected. "Today we have a different attitude. Everyone is seeing climate change at first hand. In addition, this solar park was presented in a completely different way, and the fact that the citizens themselves can benefit financially from the plant naturally also plays a major role," says Hans-Hennig Krämer, the climate protection manager of the Bliesgau Biosphere. The plant is expected to cost twelve million euros. The electricity produced by solar energy will cover the annual requirements of all private households in the municipality of Kleinblittersdorf. "The service life of the plant is about 30 years. After three years, we would already have produced as much electricity as was needed to produce the entire plant," explains Andreas Hoffmann, the CEO of Greencells. The company has 370 employees worldwide, 90 of them in Saarland. Greencells has so far built 129 solar parks in 25 countries. The BEG Köllertal makes the solar parks in Saarland into citizen projects. "The citizens can buy shares of the park. This year we have paid a dividend of 2.3 percent. The trend is rising. In the case of the citizen's solar park in Bliesransbach, the citizens of the community of Kleinblittersdorf are the first to have the opportunity to buy shares. Only afterwards it will be the turn of our other members," says Karl-Werner Götzinger, the chairman of the BEG. It is not yet clear when the citizen solar park will be a topic of discussion in the Kleinblittersdorf municipal council. If everything goes according to plan, the plant should be built sometime next year. The construction time should take about three months. "In principle, the citizens of Bliesransbach will not notice the construction, as we can reach the site via the Dragonerweg, a path through the fields. In the immediate surroundings of the plant, the electricity produced is fed into the grid on a plot of land belonging to the municipality," explains Andreas Hoffmann. The guests felt very well informed on Tuesday evening - one got the impression that many people couldn't wait until the plant was built and they could participate. An atmosphere that would have been unthinkable in Bliesransbach 15 years ago.