RIYADH: Dubai's ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has inaugurated the 300 megawatt (MW) first stage of the 900MW fifth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, with investments amounting to 2.058 billion dirhams, the Executive Office said in a statement on Tuesday.
The fifth phase will provide clean energy to over 270,000 residences in Dubai, including 90,000 residences by the commissioned first stage, and will reduce 1.18 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually, according to the statement. To be commissioned in stages until 2023, the fifth phase uses the latest solar photovoltaic bifacial technologies with Single Axis Tracking to increase energy production, it said.
The solar park is the largest single-site one in the world with a planned total capacity of 5,000MW by 2030, implemented by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) using the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model. It constitutes one of the key pillars of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, aiming to provide 75 percent of Dubai’s total power capacity from clean energy sources by 2050, according to DEWA.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum also launched a project to study the feasibility of generating electricity by utilising wind energy in Hatta.
DEWA has identified the location for a wind farm with a total capacity of about 28MW and actual wind speed for a full year is currently being measured at the location using a 150-metre metal tower.
The purpose is to collect accurate data and study the total capacity of the power plant as well as other technical details in terms of number of turbines, capacity of each, annual operating hours, among other things.
DEWA had announced in November 2019 the consortium led by ACWA Power and Gulf Investment Corporation as the Preferred Bidder to build and operate the fifth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park using photovoltaic (PV) solar panels based on the IPP model.
DEWA established Shuaa Energy 3 to implement the project and owns 60 percent of the company, in partnership with the consortium led by ACWA Power and Gulf Investment Corporation. which owns the remaining 40 percent.