Lifecycle Quality Best Practice Guidelines Version 1.0

Since its launch in 2015, the Lifecycle Quality Workstream has been raising the bar for quality assurance, firstly for Operation & Maintenance (O&M), and subsequently for Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) and Asset Management. As the European solar PV industry develops, so too do the links between the phases of a solar project’s lifecycle, resulting in substantial overlaps between the roles of EPC and O&M service providers, and Asset Managers. This new document seeks to draw together the shared elements of these roles and of quality assurance in general. It can be seen as providing the core concepts that underpin SolarPower Europe’s other Best Practice Guidelines and should be used as an accompaniment to them.

Quality management is crucial at all stages of a project. Europe currently has one of the largest and oldest fleet of solar powerplants in the world. According to SolarPower Europe’s estimates, based on the 100% Renewable Europe study, the EU’s ambition for a 55% reduction in its greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2030, requires a 45% renewable energy share in the final energy demand. In other words, Europe needs an additional 870 GW of solar capacity by 2030 to meet the continent’s climate commitments. Quality installation and long-term care will be key to guaranteeing the continued technical and economic performance of solar systems and powerplants. This is the first version of the Lifecycle Quality guidelines, and it aims to act as an umbrella document for the EPC, O&M and Asset Management Best Practice guidelines. This is a living document, powered by an active community of experts.

This document focuses on quality assurance throughout an asset’s lifecycle, and the importance of due diligence and risk management at all stages of a project. It also seeks to standardise definitions of common key terms and stakeholders that appear across SolarPower Europe’s suite of Best Practice Guidelines.

Photo: Statkraft/ Ole Martin Wold.

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