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Italy green-lights largest PV solar plant in Europe

SunEdison's 72-megawatt photovoltaic solar power plant finds a home in Italy's Veneto region.

Rovigo, Italy, whose motto is "the city of change," will soon be home to the largest photovoltaic power plant in Europe, according to SunEdison.

MEMC Electronic Materials subsidiary SunEdison announced Thursday it has received final approval from the Italian government to build a 72-megawatt photovoltaic solar power plant.

The solar services company has found a home for its plant just outside Rovigo, Italy, a city roughly halfway between Bologna and Venice. The choice is not surprising given the community's many progressive green policies and initiatives already in progress.

Rovigo's motto is "the city of change" and it's a member of CLEAR (City and Local Environmental Accounting Reporting), an EU project in which member towns and cities pledge environmental accounting and sustainability plans as part of standard governmental budget operations.

Construction of the solar power plant, which will start mid-year and take about six months to complete, will be led by Spanish construction firm Isolux Corsán and should create approximately 350 temporary local jobs for Italy's Veneto region.

Once completed, the SunEdison solar plant will be the largest PV solar plant in Europe generating enough power to supply over 17,000 homes annually with electricity. Currently, the largest photovoltaic plant in Europe is a 60-megawatt facility in Olmedilla, Spain, according to SunEdison.

Banco Santander is working in partnership with SunEdison to finance the project.