MOSCOW, January 15 (Sputnik), Ekaterina Blinova — Dubai has launched an ambitious solar power plant project planning to produce up to 1,000 megawatts of the world's cheapest electricity by 2030.
"Dubai Electricity & Water Authority [DEWA] 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," Bloomberg reported, citing DEWA Chief Executive Officer Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer.
The media outlet notes that the emirate plans to increase the plant's capacity up to 1,000 megawatts by 2030, seeking to diminish Dubai's reliance on natural gas and oil. Electricity generated by the plant will be sold for 5.85 cents per kilowatt-hour and will be the world's cheapest, according to ACWA's CEO Paddy Padmanathan.
"Dubai has a clear strategy to diversify its energy mix with renewable energy, and specifically solar, playing a key role. This when combined with a politically stable environment and the availability of low-cost finance means that solar PV technology becomes commercially cost effective," said Paddy Padmanathan as cited by Gulf Business.
The 200-megawatt plant will be able to power up to 30,000 homes per year, allowing the emirate to decrease its carbon emissions by 469,650 tons of CO2 annually, the media outlet emphasizes.
The project represents the second stage of the development of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. The investment into the project is profitable due to the Gulf region being so rich in sunshine, according to Agence France Presse.
As Dubai's crude reserves are fading the government has shifted its economy to trade, transport and tourism, focusing on renewable energy resources.
Middle East Solar Industry Association reports that solar power generation is attracting more and more Gulf companies, since the cost of its production has fallen by almost 75 percent in the past few years.