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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 10 December 2018

Morocco breaks ground on $220m Noor Ouarzazate IV solar plant

The 72-megawatt Noor Ouarzazate IV plant, developed by Saudi Arabia’s Acwa Power, will generate electricity for 4.79 US cents per kilowatt hour.
Above, one of the three Noor plants using concentrated solar power technology in Morocco. LeAnne Graves / The National
Above, one of the three Noor plants using concentrated solar power technology in Morocco. LeAnne Graves / The National

Morocco broke ground on its US$220 million solar photovoltaic (PV) plant on Sunday, inching closer to realising its 50 per cent renewables target by 2030.

Upon completion, the Noor IV will produce 176MW of solar power through three plants to be constructed at three different sites; Ouarzazate, Laayoune and Boujdour, developed by Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power, will generate electricity for 4.79 US cents per kilowatt hour (kWh).

Engineering, procurement and construction will be delivered by a consortium of Sterling Wilson, Shapoorji Pallonji and Chint ­Solar, while Morocco’s renew­able energy agency, Masen, will be the sole lender.

“This programme will not only focus on the delivery of green electricity at a low cost, but it will also deliver on the strategy of employment creation and eco­nomic development from renewable energy capacity deployment,” said Mohammed Abunayyan, the chairman of Acwa.

The Noor IV will be a total of three plants at different sites, which also include Laayoune and Boujdour. Upon completion, the Noor IV will produce 176MW of solar power.

This is part of the Noor Solar Plan, which will develop a combined solar capacity of about 2,000MW in three years. Acwa Power is also the developer of the first three Noor plants, all using concentrated solar power technology, totaling 510MW, costing $2.84 billion.

Acwa’s chief executive, Paddy Padmanathan, said that renewable energy capacity would be delivered at “pace-setting tariff levels support of the country’s unwavering commitment to decarbonise electricity generation without compromising the social and economic development of the kingdom”.

lgraves@thenational.ae

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