Morocco’s King Mohammed VI has chaired a meeting on Morocco’s renewable energy strategy in the Royal Palace of Rabat.
Rabat – The meeting is part of the King’s regular follow-up of the implementation of the renewable energy strategy, said a statement by the Royal Cabinet.
This year, the objectives that the King set in April were achieved within the deadlines, Maghreb Arab Press reported.
The objectives included beginning the operation of Noor Ouarzazate, a 580 megawatt solar energy complex. The Noor Ouarzazate III tower was successfully synchronized to the power grid, making it one of the largest solar multi-technology complexes in the world, according to the Royal Cabinet.
Engineering and technology group Sener completed the first synchronization of the Noor III plant to the Moroccan grid in August.
The company will start the final testing of Morocco’s Noor III solar power plant in Ouarzazate to prepare for commercial operation by the end of 2018, Sener wrote in a statement September 26.
“Once operational, it will mark a turning point in the [solar power station] (CSP) sector worldwide,” said Anas Raisuni, Sener’s regional managing director in Morocco.
According to the cabinet’s statement, the Noor Laayoune I and Noor Boujdour I solar power plants were also completed for “a combined capacity of 100 MW.” These two power plants were built under “an innovative financing plan that used the first green bond issue in the Kingdom.”
The plants, which are part of a new development model, paved the way for further progress to benefit the local population and economic stakeholders in Western Sahara.
At the meeting, the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (Masen) president, Mustapha Bakkoury, presented the King with the schedule for the implementation of the “Noor PV II program” and the construction of the Noor Midelt solar complex. The plant uses a mix of solar, thermal, and photovoltaic technologies.
Wind farm projects ready for 2019
Construction of the 180-megawatt Midelt wind farm and the 100-megawatt Taza wind farm will start in 2019.
In 2019, a repowering project for the Koudia El-Baida wind farm, in the Tangier-Tetouan region, will be launched. The farm is the first wind project in Morocco and has been operating since 2000 through Morocco’s National Office of Electricity (ONEE).
The repowering project will increase the farm’s capacity from 50 to 120 megawatts. The project will develop the wind energy resources in Morocco’s northern region.
At the end of this meeting, King Mohammed VI gave his instructions “to increase the initial ambitions for renewable energy to exceed the current goal of 52 percent of the national electric mix by 2030.”
Renewable energy for energy saving
The monarch directed Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani to use renewable energy in public buildings to maximize energy efficiency and achieve significant savings.
The King also stressed the need “to adopt an additional integrated program to back all the scheduled water desalination plants with renewable energy production units to ensure their autonomy and energy saving.”
The plans will rely primarily on the deposits available near the plants such as the wind power plant in Dakhla or through exploring new sources of energy, such as waste energy transformation in big cities.
El Othmani and the King’s advisors, Fouad Ali El Himma and Yassir Zenagui, as well as Minister of Economy and Finance Mohamed Benchaaboun and Minister of Energy Aziz Rabbah attended the meeting.