Week in Middle East: Kazakhstan Makes Headway in Green Economy Transition With Launch of Solar Plant, S Arabia selects bidders for 1.47 GW of solar capacity, Abu Dhabi Lays Claim To World’s Cheapest Solar Power, After Revealing Bids For 2GW Mega-Plant and More

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Kazakhstan Makes Headway in Green Economy Transition With Launch of Solar Plant

Kazakhstan inaugurated a new solar power plant on Monday in Turkistan, the Caspian country’s southernmost region bordered by Uzbekistan. The plant with the capacity of 4.8 megawatts (MW) covers approximately 27 acres and consists of 12,798 solar panels that absorb sunlight through its silicon cells and then convert it into energy. The $4.3 million clean energy facility named ‘‘Zhetisay’’ is bearing the same name as the city in which it is located. The initiative is a part of the Kazakhstani government’s strategy to develop clean energy and make the country less dependent on fossil fuel. The plant has already created several jobs for citizens and residents.

S Arabia selects bidders for 1.47 GW of solar capacity

Saudi Arabia has published a list of shortlisted bidders that will compete for the installation of close to 1.5 GW of solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity across the Kingdom. The developers were selected following a Request for Proposals (RFP) in the second round of the country’s National Renewable Energy Program (NREP), under two separate categories. The first one targets two solar projects with a combined capacity of 70 MW, while the second one covers four PV schemes totalling 1,400 MW. Category A includes the 50-MW Madinah and 20-MW Rafha projects. According to data by the Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO) of Saudi Arabia’s energy ministry, two bidders were shortlisted for each of the two projects. Category B, meanwhile, includes the Al-Faisaliah (600 MW), Jeddah (300 MW), Rabigh (300 MW) and Qurrayat (200 MW) projects. A total of four bids were submitted for each of the four schemes.

Abu Dhabi Lays Claim To World’s Cheapest Solar Power, After Revealing Bids For 2GW Mega-Plant

Abu Dhabi Power Corporation (ADPower) says it has secured the world’s lowest tariff for a solar power plant, as it moves ahead with a planned 2GW solar photovoltaic (PV) project in the Al Dhafra region of the emirate. The utility says it has received a bid of just 1.35 U.S. cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) for the project. The Al Dhafra scheme is set to be one of the largest solar PV plants in the world once it is completed by mid-2022. Abu Dhabi is already home to one very large plant, the 1.2GW Noor Abu Dhabi which started commercial operations in April 2019. The UAE is one of the few countries to build a solar PV plant larger than 1GW, alongside the likes of China, Egypt and India.

Abu Dhabi in Talks With EDF, Jinko to Install Huge Solar Farm

Abu Dhabi Power Corp. in the United Arab Emirates received five bids to build the 2-gigawatt solar project, one of the world’s largest. The winning bidder will take a 40% stake and sign a 30-year deal to sell power, John Hurst, head of capacity procurement at Emirates Water and Electricity Co., a unit of Abu Dhabi Power, said in a phone interview. Super-sized solar projects have become increasingly common as developers use scale to drive down generating costs. The U.A.E., like Saudi Arabia and other oil producers in the Persian Gulf, is pushing harder into renewables to diversify its energy supply and reduce its reliance on crude. Abu Dhabi, the U.A.E.’s largest emirate, holds most of the OPEC member’s oil reserves.

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