PARIS, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- French Ecology Minister Elisabeth Borne on Friday inaugurated the country's first floating solar plant in the southeastern city of Piolenc as part of the government's plan to switch to cleaner energy.
"Very happy to inaugurate the solar power station in Piolenc in the Vaucluse ... A national pride," Borne tweeted.
"It's the first floating photovoltaic park in France and the largest in Europe: more renewable energy and zero artificialization," she said.
Dubbed the "O'MEGA1", the project, which has been developed by Akuo Energy, France's leading independent producer of renewable energy, is able to provide electricity for more than 4,000 households while protecting the planet, said Brune Poirson, secretary of state with the ecology ministry.
With 47,000 solar PV panels, the plant will produce renewable energy covering the consumption of about 10,000 people, and will help avoid the emission of 1,093 tonnes of CO2, according to Akuo Energy data.
France depends on its 58 nuclear reactors for over 75 percent of its electricity needs.
In his ecology roadmap unveiled late 2018, French President Emmanuel Macron aimed to shrink the country's reliance on nuclear energy and reduce the share of atomic power in the French energy mix to be free-carbon by 2050.