Game-changers in the renewables space Read more on solar power developments The Annual Solar Outlook Report 2020 outlines the exponential growth of solar in the MENA region, achieved mainly due to tremendous cost declines leading the way towards grid parity. BRICS While solar power is the main focus to offer a truly viable alternative to fossil-based fuel, efficient and cost-effective storage solutions are widely accepted as being the main game-changer over the next few years. UNDP China, CCIEE launch report to facilitate low-carbon development According to thelatest report from the Middle East Solar Industry Association (MESIA), 2019proved to be a record-breaking year for global solar installed capacity, whichreached an estimated 617.9GW. Sign up for the ESI Africa newsletter AFD and Eskom commit to a competitive electricity sector In October, one of the lowest bids for solar projects was witnessed, recording $1.69 cents per kWh, for Dubai’s phase V of the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. TAGSCSPMENA regionsolar power Previous articleKenya Power intensifies ploys on illegal power connectionsNext articleABB and Porsche team up to drive forward e-mobility Babalwa BunganeBabalwa Bungane is the content producer for ESI Africa – Clarion Events Africa. Babalwa has been writing for the publication for over five years. She also contributes to sister publications; Smart Energy International and Power Engineering International. Babalwa is a social media enthusiast. Saudi Arabia is now in the third year of implementation of its massive target of 60 GW of renewable energy generation by 2030. This trend is expected to continue in the near future. It is also interestingto note that KSA and Oman (where 1.5GW of solar is expected to come online byend 2022) have now joined the afore-mentioned solar leaders. Other countrieslike Pakistan and Iraq have also demonstrated an increasing appetite for theuse of solar in their energy mix. Solar power is in aconstant state of innovation, with the breakthrough of many new technologies in2019– including bi-facial modules, thin films and the use of ArtificialIntelligence, which are promising greater efficiencies in solar projects acrossthe region. Regarding CSP in MENA,the installed capacity has doubled in the last two years, reaching 725MW. Finance and Policy Featured image: Stock “While the industry is reaching grid parity, it is great to see the deployment of new innovative technologies to increase efficiency of the systems, management of production and grid and it is also interesting to see how storage solutions, such as hydrogen, will bring the necessary flexibility to allow integration of a greater share of intermittent renewable energy in the energy system. The solar industry is thrilled and proud to participate in this profound transformation of the energy system, contributing to limit climate change.” The trend of MENAgovernments focusing on energy diversification through the implementation oflarge-scale projects is set to continue in the future. In the UAE, Dubai istargeting the rollout of 5GW of capacity by 2030 from the Mohamed Al Rashid AlMaktoum Solar Park. Secretary-general of MESIA, Martine Mamlouk said: “At MESIA, we are excited to see solar developments in the MENA region accelerating and reaching attractive tariffs, whilst lowering the carbon footprint of the regional economies.” CSP in the MENA region Furthermore, Abu Dhabi has engaged its second large PV project and considering the rollout by 2025 of several other similar large scale solar projects. RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Morocco is aiming for 52%renewable energy generation in its energy mix by 2030, Tunisia is aiming at 30%and Egypt has set its sights on 20% renewable energy by 2022. Mamlouk added: “Total investment in renewables in MENA between 2019-2023 is expected to represent $71.4 billion, a 34% share of the total investment in the power sector ($210 billion). The cost for storage is declining rapidly (a lithium-ion battery pack is expected to be as low as $62/kWh in 2030) and varied solutions such as improved concentrated solar thermal storage or large-scale liquid air storage are emerging. Generation Low carbon, solar future could increase jobs in the future – SAPVIA Also, green hydrogen could soon become a key game-changer and provide the flexibility and stability necessary to allow management and integration of intermittent renewable energy into the energy system. Join the discussions on Clean Energy at the African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa conference. Click here to register to attend or for more information about the event.
But there are fears that several smaller waves might lead to a larger outbreak which could then spiral out of control. The voluntary mass testing is being conducted with the help of medical staff from mainland China. A health workers union has criticized the effort as an inefficient waste of resources while activists have said it could be used to collect DNA samples. Authorities have dismissed the criticism as a smear campaign. Authorities hope the universal testing effort will give an accurate picture of the spread and help to contain the pandemic. So far, Hong Kong managed to keep the virus at a comparatively low level with just under 5,000 confirmed infections. Testing got under way on Tuesday with more than half a million residents so far having registered. Hong Kong has a population of about 7.5 million. Health workers are taking samples at more than 140 collection centers across the city. (BBC) HONG KONG has begun a free universal COVID-19 testing program, despite criticism that it is not effective and could be misused for surveillance. Hong Kong is battling repeated surges in COVID-19 infections. REUTERS