A Masdar-led group won the bidding for a solar power plant in Dubai. The consortium is set to complete the 800MW power project by 2020, according to the head of utility Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) said at a press conference. Spanish renewable energy developers Fotowatio Renewable Ventures, a unit of Saudi Arabian conglomerate Abdul Latif Jameel, and Gransolar Group are part of the venture, DEWA said.
Dubai, the second-largest sheikhdom in the United Arab Emirates, is increasing the use of solar energy and help meet growing demand for electricity. The Masdar project will generate electricity at 2.99 cents per kilowatt-hour, DEWA Chief Executive Officer Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer said. “This project has set a benchmark now globally,” Saji Sam, a partner at consultants Oliver Wyman, said in an interview in Dubai. “The direction now is for lower cost in solar projects. That will help renewables take a bigger share of the energy mix.”
The consortium will seek financing for the project, Masdar CEO Mohammad Jameel Al Ramahi said at the press conference in Dubai. DEWA will hold 60 percent of the joint venture company that will operate the 800-megawatt plant, with Masdar and the two Spanish companies holding the rest, Al Tayer said.
Dubai plans to invest 50 billion dirhams ($14 billion) to generate a total of 5,000 MW of power by 2030 at the desert solar park, helping provide 25 percent of the emirate’s electricity from clean energy sources. Dubai currently has 13 MW in operation at the desert site and a further 200 MW under construction. The project awarded to the Masdar-led group will make up the third phase of the park. DEWA this month announced plans to build a fourth phase consisting of another 1,000 MW.
Abu Dhabi, the largest emirate in the U.A.E., is seeking developers in a separate bidding process for a 350 MW solar project. Masdar, based in Abu Dhabi, operates a 100 MW solar-thermal plant in the emirate.