Funded by the Egyptian feed-in-tariff, 300 MW of solar PV projects will be constructed in Egypt by Sterling and Wilson, a global solar company. The first project will be a 50 MW plant built in the next ten months, with the others to follow.
“It gives us immense pleasure to be able to execute solar projects across the globe within tight timeframes and costs which are key indicators of our project execution capabilities. We are confident of reaching our target in Egypt and are delighted that we are engaged with Qualified Companies, many of whom we are already working with in South Africa, Jordan, UAE, India, South East Asia, & Latin America,” said Bikesh Ogra, President, Electrical & Solar Business of Sterling and Wilson.
Currently, Egypt relies mostly on natural gas to generate its electricity and oil for transportation. This dependence is related on the fact that the nation also produces both of those fossil fuels in great amounts. According to the World Bank, about 75% of Egypt’s electricity was produced by burning natural gas in 2012.
According to a January, 2015 Cleantechnica article, about 4.3 GW of solar and wind power may be in development in Egypt.
It has been reported that Egypt wants to generate about 20% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020, with about 12% coming from wind and the rest from solar and hydropower. In 2014, Minister of Electricity Mohamed Shaker put forth a feed-in-tariff scheme to promote the development of renewable energy in Egypt. As a result, a 4,300 MW quota for installed solar and wind was established in a first round of discussions.
The emerging energy storage industry is potentially a great boon to such endeavors because it can provide solutions for much-needed backup.
It will be fascinating to see how solar power development in some parts of the world might help stabilize national economies because electricity from solar power does not suffer from the price volatility that oil does. Solar power is also a domestic form of electricity, and not an energy form that has to be imported from other countries.