Dewa invites international expressions of interest for phase 6 of Dubai solar park project

The utility continues to focus on boosting the production of clean energy in the emirate with independent power projects

The Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park in Dubai has a goal of providing 5,000MW of solar energy by 2030. Pawan Singh / The National
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The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority is calling for expressions of interest from overseas developers to carry out work on the sixth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park, as it continues to pursue its sustainable energy goals.

The invitations are for building 900MW of solar energy using photovoltaic (PV) panels in the development, which is based on the independent power plant (IPP) model.

Dewa said the deadline for submissions had been set at 12pm on October 10.

This comes after Dewa chief executive Saeed Al Tayer announced, at last month's Wetex industry event in Dubai, that the utility was planning to float two tenders for IPPs in the coming months as it seeks to boost the emirate's energy and water portfolio. The other contract is for a desalination plant.

The solar park currently has a capacity of 1,727MW using PV technologies, with an additional 1,133MW in other projects within the area using PV panels and concentrated solar power. The sixth phase will bring total capacity to 3,760MW, with a further goal of 5,000MW by 2030.

The next phase will become operational in stages starting from the third quarter of 2025, Mr Al Tayer said.

"We continue to expand the projects of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park," he said.

Dewa has been focused on boosting the production of clean energy in Dubai, which continues to tap into renewable energy sources to power its future economy.

The emirate is ahead of its carbon emission reduction goals under the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which seeks to ensure that 100 per cent of the emirate's power production capacity is from clean energy sources by 2050, Mr Al Tayer said.

The emirate was able to reduce its carbon emissions by 21 per cent in 2021, in line with its ambitions to develop a low-carbon economy, the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy said earlier this month.

At present, about 12 per cent of Dubai's energy mix comes from clean sources, Mr Al Tayer said. The emirate plans to raise that figure to 14 per cent by the end of 2022.

Dewa has attracted about Dh40 billion ($10.9bn) of investments through the IPP model and has achieved world records for the lowest prices for solar energy, Mr Al Tayer said.

The Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park is the largest single-site solar park in the world, with total investments of about Dh50bn. Upon completion, it will reduce more than 6.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually.

In September, Dewa signed a partnership agreement with Dutch start-up Desolenator to build a carbon-neutral water purification and desalination system that is completely powered by solar energy.

Also last month, the utility said it had received four bids from international companies for a consultancy contract for the sixth phase of the solar park.

Updated: October 08, 2022, 11:02 AM