Masdar opens new office in Riyadh to oversee Saudi projects

The clean energy company will also participate in an upcoming tender announced by the Saudi Power Procurement Company

Solar panels at Saudi Arabia's King Abdulaziz City of Sciences and Technology. Reuters
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Abu Dhabi’s clean energy company Masdar has opened a new office in Saudi Arabia’s capital Riyadh to manage its projects that are part of the kingdom’s plan to boost renewable energy capacity by 2030.

Masdar will also participate in an upcoming tender announced by the Saudi Power Procurement Company for wind and solar projects with a combined capacity of 3.3 gigawatts (GW), the company said in a statement on Friday.

The world’s biggest oil exporter aims to generate 50 per cent of its electricity from clean energy sources by the end of the decade and plans to invest more than $180 billion to cut its carbon emissions to net zero by 2060.

“The Saudi office will not only look over our existing assets; it will also play a key role in the development of future pipeline projects here,” said Abdulaziz Al Mubarak, general manager of Masdar in Saudi Arabia.

Masdar was part of a consortium that developed the 400-megawatt utility-scale Dumat Al Jandal project in Saudi Arabia’s Al Jouf region.

The project, which began producing electricity last year, will be able to power 70,000 homes once it is ramped up to full capacity.

Along with France’s EDF Renewables and Nesma Company, Masdar is developing a 300-MW solar plant near Jeddah, the kingdom’s second-largest city.

Masdar said it is sees “considerable potential” for its joint venture Emerge in Saudi Arabia, which plans to develop its commercial and industrial sector for solar power generation as part of its Vision 2030 economic plan.

Masdar and Paris-listed EDF set up Emerge in 2019 to explore opportunities for the development of non-utility scale renewables and energy-efficient projects in the UAE and other countries in the region.

“This new office … will better enable us to help diversify Saudi Arabia’s energy mix and meet the ambitious renewable energy targets outlined in Vision 2030,” said Mohamed Al Ramahi, chief executive of Masdar.

Saudi Arabia is focusing heavily on renewable energy as it looks to meet its climate commitments, while diversifying away from oil exports.

State-owned oil exporter Saudi Aramco has established a $1.5bn sustainability fund to invest in “breakthrough” technology and start-ups to help fight climate change.

The fund, managed by Aramco’s venture capital arm, will invest in technology that supports the energy company’s 2050 net-zero goals while helping to develop new lower-carbon fuels.

The International Energy Agency on Thursday said it expects fossil fuel demand to peak or reach a plateau in all its scenarios for the first time.

Based on current policies, natural gas demand will reach a plateau by the end of the decade while oil demand will “level-off” in the mid-2030s amid rising sales of electric vehicles, the agency said in its World Energy Outlook.

Masdar has more than $20bn of investments globally and is rapidly expanding its renewables portfolio as countries focus on cutting emissions to limit global warming.

This year, it signed a number of new agreements to explore and develop renewable energy and green hydrogen projects after increasing its global clean energy portfolio capacity by 40 per cent in 2021. The company aims to reach 100GW of renewable capacity in the next 10 years.

Updated: October 28, 2022, 12:02 PM
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