Algeria explores electricity exports to Europe + Oman considers concentrated solar power projects
Algeria could be an energy supplier for Europe: Preparations and studies are underway to export electricity from Algeria to Europe through undersea cables, Algerian Energy Minister Mohammed Arkab said, according to state-owned Radio Algeria. Algeria has become well-positioned in electricity production with a capacity of 25 GW, the minister said. The studies are being implemented with “European partners,” the minister said, without naming the entities or countries involved. The Europe-bound electricity will be produced by gas-operated power plants as well as solar plants that are still being developed by Algeria, the minister said.
REMEMBER- MENA is emerging as an energy lifeline for Europe: Europe is continuing to wean itself off of Russian fossil fuels after imposing sanctions on Moscow in response to the Ukraine invasion. Supply shortages have caused natural gas and electricity prices in the continent to surge to record highs this year, pushing the EU to strengthen ties with other energy suppliers, including Egypt. The EU signed last year a gas import agreement with Egypt and Israel and is looking to accelerate interconnection projects with the region.
Oman is exploring concentrated solar power in Duqm: A potential 600 MW concentrated solar power (CSP) project in Duqm, Oman, is currently being studied by the Oman Power and Water Procurement Company (OPWP), Oman Observer reports. The feasibility study was expected to be completed last year but was delayed for unknown reasons. OPWP plans to include thermal storage in the project to ensure a stable supply of electricity from the plant. If completed, the project would be the first CSP project in Oman, which is looking to integrate different renewable technologies.
What is CSP? CSP uses steam generated from heated water to produce electricity, and it requires collector and generator systems. Its biggest advantage is that it can store power, helping to resolve the issue of peak energy demand, which is often at night or early in the morning when there is no sunlight. However, CSP is often more expensive and water-intensive than photovoltaic tech. Morocco’s Noor I and II solar parks use CSP technology.