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Photo credits | Soneva

Male’, Maldives, 10th June 2024 – Soneva, the esteemed sustainable luxury resort operator, is making significant progress in its dedication to renewable energy, focusing particularly on solar power in the Maldives. By 2024, Soneva Fushi in the Baa Atoll and Soneva Jani in the Noonu Atoll aim to meet nearly 50 percent of their energy needs through photovoltaic (PV) sources, thanks to new PV installations. Previously, Soneva Fushi’s PV system supplied about 12 percent of its energy requirements.

The expansion in solar energy development has been made possible by a USD 10 million funding from Germany’s Aareal Bank in December 2022. This investment has enabled Soneva Fushi to achieve 2.55MWp (megawatt peak) of solar power and 2.7 MWh (megawatt hours) of battery storage capacity, while Soneva Jani now boasts 2.75 MWp of solar power and 2.0 MWh of battery storage capacity.

Since its inception in 1995, Soneva has been a pioneer in sustainability within the luxury hospitality industry, striving towards zero-carbon operations across its resorts in the Maldives.

“Our substantial investment in solar energy highlights our commitment to sustainability while positively impacting our financial performance,” said Bruce Bromley, Chief Financial Officer and Deputy CEO at Soneva. “By adopting solar power on such a large scale, we’ve significantly reduced our carbon footprint and showcased what is achievable in the hospitality industry. The crucial support from Aareal Bank has allowed us to integrate our energy systems with other renewable technologies, moving us closer to our goal of fossil fuel-free operations.”

To fully capitalize on solar energy, Soneva is exploring the installation of floating solar panels in the ocean around its island resorts, along with new land-based locations. The upcoming Soneva Secret 2024 resort in the remote Haa Dhaalu Atoll of the Maldives will feature floating solar panels projected to supply nearly 90 percent of its energy needs. The resort will also include an innovative ice storage system for air conditioning, setting a new benchmark for renewable energy usage.

Soneva is also enhancing its sustainability strategies, including rainwater harvesting and load shifting, to maximize renewable energy utilization. Additionally, the company is evaluating alternative storage technologies like flow batteries, which offer longer lifespans and significant energy storage capacities, and thermal storage to maintain and regulate renewable heat.

“The financial sector is crucial in transitioning the property sector towards a carbon-free future. At Aareal Bank, we embrace this responsibility and are pleased to see our collaborative efforts contribute to sustainable development on multiple fronts,” stated Thomas Adaemmer, Managing Director and Head of Asia-Pacific at Aareal Bank.

 

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