Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) has launched a new international tender for a large-scale solar power project, confirming the North African country’s resolve to become a green-power leader.
The project will have a total installed capacity of 400 MW and will include systems based on solar photovoltaic as well as solar thermal power generation technology.
This hybrid solar power project will enhance Morocco’s solar power base and capacities to significantly increase the share of renewable energy and reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
Morocco, which will host next UN climate change conference (COP22), has pledged to continue its renewable energy development policy beyond 2020 with about 2,500 MW wind, solar & hydro capacity to come online between 2021 and 2025.
According to the country’s future energy plans, wind power will be able to produce 1,000 MW between 2021 and 2015 while solar will contribute at least 1,100 MW and hydro will add some 450 MW.
Morocco, which imports 94 pc of its energy as fossil fuels from abroad, is poised to become a solar superpower with its mega-project in Ouarzazate. The first phase of this project is called Noor-1 and is expected to produce 160 megawatts. The project’s next phases – Noor 2 and Noor 3 – are to follow in 2016 and 2017, and a call for tenders is open for Noor 4.
Once all phases are complete, Noor will be the largest solar power production facility in the world, covering an area of 30 sq km. It will generate 580 megawatts and provide electricity to over one million homes