Morocco hosts COP 22

In November 2016 Morocco will be the African leader in the fight against climate change

Solar station Noor Ouarzazate
Solar station Noor Ouarzazate
17 FEB 2016
by

The kingdom of Morocco is working harder and harder to become a leader in the field of renewable energy. Morocco is working to fight against climate change through various initiatives in this respect. The Moroccan minister of environment, Hakima El Haite, announced on various occasions the kingdom commitments on the field. The country planned to reduce its emissions by 13% greenhouse gas in 2030, compared to 2010. Morocco is particularly concerned of agriculture as a pillar of its GDP to increase it to 15%, efforts that will reduce the risk of flooding.

Morocco is a land of fossil resources, but spoiled by wind and sun. The kingdom chooses to focus on renewable energy. In 2009, a target of 42% of mix energy by the 2030 had been planned. Solar and wind power plans were launched. The wind energy project of Tarfaya city will produce the equivalent needs of a city of 1.5 million inhabitants, began to turn in December.

Morocco works day and night to install the world big solar energy station in the city of Ouarzazate. The first mega solar power plant project Noor.

Morocco intends to position itself as the regional leader on climate issues with the experiences of its human resources. Morocco kingdom obtained the organization of COP22 this year in Marrakech, the environment minister of Morocco looks for the development of triangular partnerships between industrialized and African countries who hold local knowledge.

Morocco focuses on the need of solidarity between industrialized and developing countries in order to low the emitting of CO2. Morocco objective would be increased with 19% in case of getting financial support from the green fund.

Morocco world biggest solar energy station

At the end of 2015, Morocco launched the first phase of its National Solar Plan with the commissioning of the solar station Noor Ouarzazate, set to become the largest in the world. Morocco is seeking to position itself as a major player in the green economy.

Forty kilometers from the city of Ouarzazate half a million mirrors installed on 450 hectares reflect light from the solar star and soon generate the necessary energy for the future of Morocco. Noor Ouarzazate 1 station will produce, initially, 160 megawatts and will be already the largest thermo-solar power plant ever built in Africa. According to information gathered from the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) created in 2010, it would have required an investment of $ 800 million. Noor Ouarzazate, the first solar power project run by the Moroccan Solar Energy Agency, is the world’s largest solar power complex with an overall capacity of 580MW.

Built on an area of more than 3,000 hectares, Noor Ouarzazate includes four multi-technological solar power plants, developed in total respect of the international norms, particularly in terms of technology. The project is also associated with a research and development platform which covers more than 150 hectares. Officially inaugurated on the first Thursday of February 2016 in Ouarzazate by HM King Mohammed VI, the first phase of Noor Ouarzazate “Noor I” was carried out under the independent power producer (IPP) scheme. This plant, which covers over 480 hectares, has a generating capacity of 160MW and is equipped with a thermal energy storage device allowing it to operate at full capacity for 3 hours without sunlight (after sunset or cloudy weather).

The second and third plants of the Ouarzazate solar complex (Noor II and Noor III), whose construction works were launched on the same day by the sovereign, adopt as well the IPP scheme for production. With thermo-solar cylindrical parabolic troughs and 7 hours of energy storage capability, the 200MW power plant (Noor II) will be built on an area of 680 hectares. Noor III, which will require an estimated budget of 645 million euros, will be built on an area of 750 hectares. The plant is an installed capacity of 150 MW, which will employ central tower technology with salt receivers and 7 to 8 hours of energy storage capability.

These three projects, combined with the photovoltaic phase (Noor IV), will make Noor Ouarzazate the largest multi-technology solar production site in the world with a capacity of 580 MW and a total investment of over 24 billion dirhams, excluding common infrastructure developed by MASEN and National Electricity and Drinking Water Office for the needs of developers.

Tarfaya Wind Farm is the largest in Africa

Tarfaya wind farm which represents 15% of the national target of Morocco wind energy (2,000 MW in 2020). This energy park will produce of over 1,000 GWh / year, "it is the production needed to supply a city of nearly a million and a half inhabitants, like Marrakech. With an installed capacity of 301 MW and 131 wind turbines of 2.3 MW each, the Tarfaya wind farm is "the largest wind project ever on the African continent," according to the National Office of electricity and Water ONEE. The park site benefits from extremely favorable climatic conditions for wind, to achieve a 45% load factor.

As part of sustainable development goals of the ONEE and its two partners of Tarfaya project, "Nareva Holding" (Morocco) and "GDF SUEZ SA" (France), the park will avoid emissions of approximately 900,000 tons of CO2 per year, equivalent to the amount of CO2 absorbed annually by 150 million trees.