In September 2023

The Portuguese Environment Agency granted an unfavourable decision to the Estoi Fotovoltaic Project

Between 2021-23 PROBAAL worked with the community to neutralise the threat of a proposed solar power plant of 83 megawatts on ecological land in the Cerro do Leiria area of the Eastern Algarve in Portugal.

Public Participation
831 submissions were made.

Thank you to 
everyone who participated online and to those who talked with their neighbours and friends to raise awareness of what it is we are preserving.

We did this Together!

Record response floods in on last day for people’s feelings on Sotavento solar project

Date: 21.07.2023


The future of our water, soil and biodiversity is at risk and PROBAAL believes that a ‘have now, pay later’ attitude to the environment, is exactly why the planet is in its current ecological predicament.

Environmental studies demonstrate the ecological and water values of this area and we assert that this land is of greatest value in its intact state and should not be destroyed in the name of big energy.

We must work to be ‘green’ in action and not only in name.


PROBAAL strongly opposes the location of the proposed 83MW solar power plant on Ecological Reserve land; follow our journey in the media and view other news articles related to Solar Issues in Portugal

As of 19th May 2023, this project is in the PUBLIC CONSULTATION phase.

Although the project is named CENTRAL FOTOVOLTAICA ESTOI, the location of the panels is proposed to be near to Cerro do Leiria, Tavira.

Please join us during this period of 62 days, during which anyone has the right to register their opinion or concerns about the solar power plant proposal.

You only need your name and email address to register on the Portal Participa website and submit your contribution. 

Make your voice heard until 20th July 2023. Click on the JOIN PUBLIC CONSULATATION button and follow the instructions and advice: 

The more individual participations in the PUBLIC CONSULTATION, the more impact we can have on the process.

This Solar project would adversly affect a lot of people and you might be one of them. It proposes to be destructive to nature and would damage our water supply. Now is the time to say NO!

Please take a few minutes online to stand up for nature in this community.

HOW TO REGISTER for the online for the objection is EXPLAINED BELOW

Potential Human Impacts

  • Being access denied to land that has been open and shared for generations; for walkers, hunters, cyclists, and tourists from all over the world, who enjoy the area for its leisure potential and natural beauty.

  • Loss of tourism income for guest houses and Alojamenta Locals nearby, whose business relies on the natural values of the area and would be especially negatively affected during the construction phase.

  • Reduced air-quality due to creating of fine clay dust; during the months of the land clearance.

  • Noise for months while hundreds of thousands of rocks and boulders are removed from the ground.

  • Glare to residents living in homes on the elevated South side of the valley, from the sun reflecting on 175,000 glass panels.
  • .
  • Visual impacts for homes over-looking the massive, panelled -areas.

  • Reduced house values for properties located near to the panel sites or high-tension towers, or those which would their view negatively altered.

  •    EMF impacts for people who are sensitive to electromagnetic frequencies; for people living close to the high-tension towers.

  •   Reduced rainfall due to removal of 1.5 square kilometres of vegetation.

  •  Reduced water available in the aquifer for boreholes.

  •    Potential for pollution of aquifer water by heavy metals leaching from solar panels over the following years.

  •    Raised temperatures due to removal of vegetation and residual heat build-up in panel glass during the day, that is later emitted.

For guidance about how to write your submission:

BACK STORY: In February 2021, residents of Cerro do Leiria in Faro district, discovered plans to build a 154 hectare solar power plant on the wild and beautiful Barrocal land and PROBAAL was moved to action.

PROBAAL – Pró Barrocal Algarvio – is a grass-roots environmental association based in the East Algarve region of Southern Portugal which has a particular concern regarding environmental issues in this locality.