Week in Middle East: IFC, ALEXBANK Partner to Promote Egyptian Farmers’ Switch to Solar Irrigation Systems; BASF, SABIC and Linde Join Forces to Build Renewables-fueled Petrochemical Furnace; Masdar Commits to Support Ethiopia’s Solar Energy Objectives


IFC, ALEXBANK Partner to Promote Egyptian Farmers’ Switch to Solar Irrigation Systems


IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and ALEXBANK, a leading Egyptian private bank, today announced a partnership to help Egyptian farmers access financing to purchase solar irrigation systems, reducing their reliance on diesel-powered generators and boosting their productivity and incomes. Through the partnership, IFC and ALEXBANK will design new financial products to enable farmers – most of whom may lack direct access to electricity grid – to purchase and install solar powered irrigation pumps. IFC estimates that using solar powered pumps could save farmers up to 14 billion Egyptian pounds ($875 million) annually in diesel fuel costs, helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions. An estimated one million diesel-powered pumps across Egypt could potentially be replaced by solar.


BASF, SABIC and Linde Join Forces to Build Renewables-fueled Petrochemical Furnace


BASF, SABIC and Linde have signed a joint agreement to develop and demonstrate solutions for electrically heated steam cracker furnaces. The partners have already jointly worked on concepts to use renewable electricity instead of the fossil fuel gas typically used for the heating process. With this innovative approach focusing on one of the petrochemical industries’ core processes, the parties strive to offer a promising solution to significantly contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions within the chemical industry.
The project aims to reduce the CO2 emissions by powering the process with electricity. By using electricity from renewable sources, the fundamentally new technology has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by as much as 90%.

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Masdar Commits to Support Ethiopia’s Solar Energy Objectives

Masdar signs Memorandum of Understanding with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Finance to develop solar power projects with total capacity of 500 megawatts in Eastern African nation. Masdar, one of the world’s leading renewable energy companies, and the Government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia are exploring the development of solar power projects with a total capacity of 500 megawatts (MW) and related grid infrastructure across Ethiopia. The agreement covers the development, financing, design, engineering, procurement, construction, testing, commissioning, insurance, ownership, operation, maintenance and transfer of photovoltaic (PV) plants, and the infrastructure required to transmit the electricity. The aim is to sign power purchase agreements (PPAs) and other relevant agreements later this year, and to commence commercial operations in 2022.

TAQA to Focus on Renewable Energy, Unveils 2030 Strategy for Sustainable Growth

TAQA announced to substantially increase its gross power and water desalination capacity in the UAE and internationally. Abu Dhabi National Energy Company TAQA, one of the largest listed integrated utility companies in the region, announced today its 2030 vision for sustainable and profitable growth. The strategic plan places at its core the global acceleration of the energy transition, and TAQA’s ambition to become a champion for low carbon power and water.

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Masdar’s Mauritanian Solar Plant Set to Provide 15 MW to Grid

Masdar’s Sheikh Zayed Solar PV Plant in Nouakchott, Mauritania, has been inaugurated, and is now set to start producing 15 MW of renewable energy to the country’s grid. The new plant consists of 29,826 micromorph thin-film panels, and has been constructed at a cost of US $31.99 million. Masdar says it has reduced the project’s carbon footprint further by designing the support PV module support structure to be piled into the ground, rather than using a concrete base. The The facility is now accounts for 10 percent of the country’s total electricity capacity.

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