Falling costs support Egyptian renewables funding

Further evidence that the tide is moving quickly in favor of renewables in the Middle East and North Africa is being provided by the rejuvenation of the sector in Egypt. According to REN21, the global renewable energy umbrella group, recent tenders outside the country have shown that renewables should be as cheap an option, or even cheaper, than thermal power production in Egypt. While Cairo has been focused on natural gas supply, it is keen to promote all forms of domestic energy. Renewables have experienced a long hiatus in the country after a promising start. About a decade ago, the country was the biggest wind power producer in Africa and the Middle East — a position it has since lost — as a result of a string of donor-funded projects. The 545 MW Zafarana wind power project on the Gulf of Suez was financed by development agencies in Japan, Germany, Denmark and Spain. Further phases were planned and even more attractive locations identified. It was hoped that the area would collectively provide 2-3 GW of capacity by 2015, but no progress was made. Egypt was also an early starter in solar power. A 140 MW combined Concentrated Solar Power/gas-fired plant

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Source: CTRM Center

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