• Frequently
    Asked
    Questions

    (FAQ)

What is our business model?

Atlas's business model is to contract the best Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) and Operations and Maintenance (O&M) Contractors to build and operate (including all contracting for those phases) the Projects under Atlas team supervision and monitoring, while the broader Atlas team provides financing, and sales of the energy produced.

What are Project Phases?

Permitting: Studies regarding Environmental Impact, Social Impact and others are completed and presented to the appropriate government agencies, who review the impacts and the proposed management plans and determine if they will provide approvals and permission for the Project to go ahead. If and when the permits are approved, the project can move forward. Between this phase and the Pre-Construction Phase, the EPC Contractor is hired, and they will begin recruitment and contracting for their teams.

Pre-Construction/Site Preparation: Pre-Construction and site preparation usually fall under two big groups of tasks: the creation of the infrastructure necessary to start building (offices, cafeterias and toilets for workers, road improvements etc.), and the preparation of the physical footprint to begin construction. This second section involves the removal of plants and animals and any movable cultural heritage if it exists, from the project site, and the evening of the soil to make a flat base on which to build the panel mounting systems.

Construction: Once the land is ready for the mounting systems, construction begins. Diches are dug to provide the foundations for the panel mounting systems, and to lay the electric cabling. The mounting systems are constructed and installed, and the panels are attached to the rigs. Depending on this Project this will be the time that transmission lines and substations are built as needed. Post-Construction: The Panels are connected to the systems and the process of ensuring the panels are able to produce power effectively and safely, and that all the components are functioning. Operation: A small number of experts remain on site making sure that all the components continue working appropriately, and providing monitoring and maintenance, for the duration of the Project. This can last between 20-30 years depending on the Project.

Abandonment and Closure: At the end of the Project's established life cycle, if the Project owner does not want to expand or replace the technology with new technology, the project will be abandoned and closed. This involves the removal of all existing Project infrastructure, including all panels, mounting systems etc., and disposing of the components as dictated by national legislative requirements for industrial waste.

What is a Grievance Mechanism?

A Grievance Mechanism is a formal way that anyone negatively impacted by one of Atlas' Projects can communicate that negative impact to the Company, so the issue can be addressed. The mechanism is open to anyone directly impacted by the Project, regardless of if they are community members, employees or other stakeholders. You can provide your contact information for Atlas representatives to contact you and ask for more information, or let you know how Atlas will proceed to resolve the issue, but everyone is welcome to submit complaints anonymously as well. Use of the Project Grievance Mechanism is free, and does not prevent you from pursuing judicial remedies.

Will there be community meetings?

Every Project has community meetings, the duration and frequency will depend on the Project itself. There will be meetings prior to pre-construction where Communities will be informed about the project, its size, impact, management plans, locations, and to answer community questions. There will be monthly meetings for the duration of Pre-Construction, Construction, and Post-Construction, as well as any special meetings needed to provide additional information. There will also be at least bi-annual meetings during operations or whenever an unexpected incident requires it. Project specific information, including locations, times and dates, will be updated on each Project website.

Are the Panels Safe?

The technology associated with Atlas' Projects are not known to pose any significant health dangers if used properly. Given that the technology includes electricity, as with all technologies of this nature there is the potential for electrocution or fire within the installations, but in and of themselves do not impact the health of Project neighbors. Likely Health and Safety issues for neighbors are associated with an increase in vehicular traffic during the construction phases, or to trespassers (human or animal) not following the appropriate safety protocols. The technology uses very few toxic substances and in very low amounts, meaning that is very unlikely to cause any health concerns. Although operating panels do provide some low levels of Electro-Magnetic Fields, the impacts to those outside of the site boundaries are no greater than those individuals are already exposed to in their daily lives. Anyone entering the site premises must receive full health and safety induction to minimize likelihood of risk or injury.

Will they affect weather or temperature?

Solar Projects will not impact the weather, and although there is likely to be a very small increase in the existing average temperature directly surrounding the site itself, there is very little chance this change will be noticeable or enough to make any impacts on human, flora or fauna in the area.

Will this Project make energy cheaper for me?

The energy produced by the solar plants are unlikely to directly impact the cost of electricity in the Project area, as the electricity forms part of the national grid, which provides more supply to feed national demand, in turn lowering the cost of the entire grid. Although this will benefit the country as a whole, it is unlikely individual or domestic users will notice a difference in costs.

Can you provide panels to me/my organization?

Atlas is a firm believer of the "shared benefit" mindset of Project Development. The details of these benefits will be determined by national legislative requirements and Atlas's negotiations with the relevant parties, but please come to the next community meeting where Project specific information will be available. This may involve donations of panels, but it is on a case by case basis.

Will this affect animals?

Animals are not affected by the operation of a solar plant itself, however they will have to be removed from the Project footprint to avoid damage or injury due to their presence in an active industrial site. In pre-construction and site preparation phases, animals will be frightened or startled by noise and vibration causing them to vacate the site footprint and prevent their injury or death during land clearing. During the land-clearing phase slow moving animals are physically removed outside the footprint, prior to a fence being closed off preventing them from returning.

Will this affect plants?

During construction, existing plants will be reviewed to determine their vulnerability, status on any endangered list or list of plants of scientific value, and robust, healthy, young examples of these will be removed and put into a nursery for replanting. Other plants will be removed by hand or machines, and the plant waste will be used to support the replanting of protection zones. The use of the wood will depend on agreements negotiated with the landowners. During operations there will be ongoing clearing of new plant matter to maximize efficiency of then panels, and minimize damage. The operation of the plant itself does not affect flora.

Will we still have access to the land?

As the site could be dangerous to civilians, any community members interested in accessing the land will have to be providing with induction health and safety training, personal protective equipment and a guide for their time on site. If Cultural Heritage sites are found on site, access to these will be determined through guidance by the local authority.

Will I have to move?

Atlas does everything possible to avoid the physical or economic displacement of individuals as a result of Project development, so it is very unlikely you would have to move. If resettlement is necessary, the detailed information would be available on the Project specific-sites.

What benefits will you bring me?

Atlas is a firm believer of the "shared benefit" mindset of Project Development. The details of these benefits will be determined by national legislative requirements and Atlas's negotiations with the relevant parties, but please come to the next community meeting where Project specific information will be available.

Will you be hiring?

Atlas does not contract directly for the Projects we develop, but all Contractors have the responsibility to maximize local employment, disclosing the number of workers or contracts and the experience needed directly to host communities.

What are the environmental impacts? (external)

The environmental impacts of this project have been reviewed by national environmental authorities and are determined to be minimal. The remaining environmental impacts will be managed by government approved measures. We will be having our first meeting with the community to discuss impacts and management plans on July 20th 2018, but the impact assessment which provides all the details is available at www. Example.com (usually government website). We will be holding monthly meetings during construction and bi-annual meetings during operations to provide ongoing and relevant information.