Bangkok to power two metro lines with solar energy

ASEAN’s leading renewables-based electricity producer CKPower Public Company Limited (CK Power)[1] and Bangkok Expressway and Metro PLC recently inked an agreement to use solar energy to power two metro lines in Bangkok: the MRT Chalerm Ratchamonkol Line (MRT Blue Line) and the MRT Chalong Ratchadham Line (MRT Purple Line)—both are crucial parts of Bangkok’s transport infrastructure.

Signing Ceremony of Bangkok’s Solar Assets for Metro Lines
Image: CK Power

“This is the first time that solar energy will be used to power a Thai mass transit system on such a large scale. We are proud to pioneer new uses for solar energy in Thailand, and our partnership with Bangkok Expressway and Metro will make an important contribution to increasing the use of renewable energy sources,” said Thanawat Trivisvavet, Managing Director of CK Power Public Company Limited.

As per the agreement, the solar assets will be installed across six locations with a total area of over 106,000 m2, including the roofs of rail depots, car parks and office buildings of the Blue Line and the Purple Line. Within the designed 25-year service duration, this solar portfolio is expected to supply 452 GWh of solar energy, equivalent to roughly 12% of the total anticipated consumption of the two metro lines combined.

“We are committed to supporting Thailand’s transition to clean energy and helping to fulfil the national goal to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2065[2],” said Dr. Sombat Kitjalaksana, Managing Director of Bangkok Expressway and Metro PLC.

“Under this arrangement, we can eliminate an incredible 300,000 tons of carbon emissions during the project period. The project is made particularly special because our arrangements with CKPower will, at the same time, also help us reduce our electricity consumption costs too,” added Dr. Sombat.

This collaboration is regarded as only the start of an important partnership. Both companies are actively exploring ways to expand on this breakthrough initiative to substitute conventional energy with clean energy sources, contributing to the decarbonization of Thailand’s transport infrastructure.

In a larger context, CK Power and Bangkok Expressway and Metro PLC’s collaboration can also be viewed as global pioneering of using solar to decarbonize public mass transportation. This could be another promising urban decarbonization segment right after using solar charging piles[3] to deliver clean, solar energy to EVs.

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