1.55 GW of Large-Scale Renewable Energy Projects Under Construction in 13 Arab Nations

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The Regional Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (RCREEE, Cairo) finds that more than 15 large-scale renewable energy projects totaling 1.55 GW are under construction in 13 Arab states, in a recently launched report on renewable energy in the region. This is double the region’s current renewable energy capacity.

RCREEE presented key findings from the two reports that comprise the Arab Future Energy Index (AFEX) at the Beirut Energy Forum on September 26th, 2013. The renewable energy report finds that the Arab region has substantial underutilized renewable energy resources, but that almost all nations in the region have adopted long-term technology-specific renewable energy targets.

“This is only the start of a long and challenging path to provide the Arab region with accurate, reliable, and comparable information regarding their renewable energy and energy efficiency capabilities,” said RCREEE Board Chair Sheikh Nawaf Bin Ibrahim Bin Hamad Al Khalifa.

“We hope that this initiative will help our member states in their efforts toward sustainable energy transitions through quality tracking of the progress made and challenges yet to be tackled.”

 

No mention of UAE, Saudi Arabia

While the report listed Morocco, Jordan and Egypt as leading nations for renewable energy, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia were not among the 13 Arab nations mentioned in press materials.

The UAE built the first large concentrating solar power (CSP) project in the region, the 100 MW Shams 1, and Saudi Arabia set ambitious goals for both CSP and solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment, as well as building domestic PV manufacturing.

 

Political struggles impact renewable energy development

The AFEX reports cover the thirteen nations of Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen.

Roughly half of the nations mentioned are impacted by either recent or current political and/or military conflicts within their borders. The report mentions that the civil war in Syria has delayed its public tender for its first large-scale wind project.

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