The NREA Outlines Project Plans for Two Large Solar and Wind Energy Projects
This year, Egypt publicly set the goal of achieving 42% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2035. In line with that, The New and Renewable Energy Authority (NREA) has outlined projects to construct two large solar and wind power generation plants.
Recent developments for solar and wind energy projects in Egypt
The two projects created by NREA correspond to the government’s strategy to increase renewables in the country’s energy mix. The projects include a solar power plant with a generation capacity of 830 megawatts (MW). A wind power plant facility with a 1,700 MW capacity is also set to be developed.
Aside from NREA, the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy has already broken ground on multiple solar energy collection and generation projects. Plans that are fully installed are established in Kurymat and Siwa. The Kurymat power plant is an integrated solar combined cycle and will account for 3% of Egypt’s total energy production. Likewise, Siwa’s solar plant produces 30% of the total electrical demand in the city.
Meanwhile, facilities in Hurghada and West Nile have yet to be developed. And wind power projects located in Zafarana and Jebel El-Zeit were only recently approved, pertaining to a 1,375-MW facility and a $1.35 (E£26.3) billion unit, respectively.
Regarding completed projects, the most notable one is the $2.2 (E£43) billion Benban Solar Park in the Southern Aswan Governorate. The space has a capacity of approximately 1,465 MW and contributes about 18% to the total electricity generation in Egypt.
Egypt’s rich energy landscape
In terms of solar resources, Egypt receives 3,050 h of sunlight per year. This is why energy can be employed in several solar energy systems and industries. Photovoltaic and concentrated solar power plant establishments are just a few innovations the country’s predicted to develop and enhance.
Egypt currently has a solar energy potential of 74 billion MWh per year, meaning solar energy is a lucrative industry in the country. Solar energy has long been acknowledged for its positive environmental impact; it neither produces greenhouse gases nor pollutes the water. Solar power proves advantageous for urban areas as well. Hoymiles explains that solar power enables a more equitable distribution of energy. Aside from providing accessible energy supply for residential and commercial communities alike, solar energy can reduce electricity bills, especially as individuals use less from utility suppliers.
Beyond solar power, the country has a rich wind energy supply, mainly in the region of the Sinai Peninsula and areas surrounding the Gulf of Suez. The country consistently observes high wind velocities and contains large uninhabited deserted areas — making it ideal for harvesting wind energy. Like solar power, wind energy doesn’t emit toxic contaminants into the air or generate waste. It also has one of the lowest water-consumption footprints and helps alleviate water scarcity worldwide.
All those considered, the country has a competitive edge in generating renewable energy. It shows that a few solar energy companies have plans to expand their presence in Egypt. One such company is KarmSolar, which announced the sale of a minority stake to raise its capital. The spike in the capital will be used to grow the company’s current power generation and distribution projects.
In the coming years, Egypt has much to expect, especially as it actualizes its vision toward widespread renewable energy usage.
For more news on renewable energy, do read through our latest posts on Energy Egypt.