Dubai Doubles Power-Plant Size to Make Cheapest Solar Energy
Comment of the Day

January 15 2015

Commentary by David Fuller

Dubai Doubles Power-Plant Size to Make Cheapest Solar Energy

Here is the opening of this interesting report from Bloomberg:

Dubai’s government-owned utility plans to double the size of a solar power project that it expects will produce some of the world’s cheapest electricity.

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority awarded a contract to build the 200-megawatt plant to a group led by Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power International. The 1.2 billion dirham ($330 million) generating station will be completed in April 2017, DEWA Chief Executive Officer Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer said yesterday at a news conference in the Persian Gulf emirate.

ACWA will sell electricity from the plant to DEWA at 5.85 cents per kilowatt-hour, a price that will be “the lowest by far” for solar power globally and among the cheapest from other sources, Paddy Padmanathan, the Riyadh-based company’s CEO, said in an interview.

Dubai plans to build 1,000 megawatts of solar capacity by 2030, enough to meet 5 percent of its forecast electricity needs that year, as it seeks to reduce reliance on natural gas as its main source of energy for local use. Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi, the U.A.E.’s capital and largest emirate, are also developing renewable energy as oil producers in the Gulf try to reduce the burning of costlier fossil fuels to produce power.

David Fuller's view

There will be no stopping solar power, which is by far the most flexible energy source, coming in units of variable sizes and shapes.  The efficiency of new solar panels improves every year, simultaneously lowering costs.

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