Midelt, Enel Green Power’s best sustainable building site

Emissions kept at bay, total waste recycling and the refurbishment of a community water well: the building site for Midelt in Morocco is a poster child for sustainability and the creation of shared value. EGP keeps looking forward, thanks to its partnership agreement with IRESEN.

Where there’s will, there’s a way: since day one, this is the guiding principle for the construction of Midelt, to this day, Enel Green Power’s best sustainable building site. Despite operating in a challenging geographical context, the project was structured in a way to put into practice the longest list of sustainable best practices in a single operational site.

But there’s more, as Enel Green Power strives to go the extra mile in delivering novel and cutting-edge development strategies for renewables in supporting Africa’s growth. As part of the “Solar Decathlon Africa 2019”, this is the main goal that leads to the signing of a cooperation agreement with the Research Institute for Solar and New Energies (IRESEN) to share know-how and technical advancements in the fields of innovation, renewables and the circular economy.

The Midelt wind farm is the first power plant of the 850 MW Projet Éolien Intégré, a joint venture between EGP and Nareva, secured after the award of an international tender. Midelt, set in the context of this agreement, will be the first key step in the territory’s energy transition.

Midelt, a building site that’s building on sustainability

One of Midelt’s vantage points is its waste recycling system. Each component was thoroughly designed and optimized, from the complete reuse of standard waste – including metals and pallets – to the full recycling of lubricants (stored by a specialized operator), including projects dedicated to the reuse of grey waters and wastewater deriving from the manufacturing of concrete and the washing of vehicles.

Even waste materials have become a resource as they’re reused at a 100% ratio: excavation materials were used to improve the condition of levees and roads, even public ones.

Emission levels were kept at bay through the widespread use of micro photovoltaic arrays that provide energy to the work camps; while LED lights further curbed the overall energy consumption. Even small gestures, like the use of car-sharing services for transport services to and from the main town, delivered a positive impact on par with the restoration of numerous native trees and shrubs in the work area, including rosemary.

EGP and Nareva secured their water supply through pipes that tap from a local lake to fill a tank system, thus avoiding further strains on the city’s water mains.

A well of hope

The water supply was still a nagging problem for hundreds of households because of a faulty well that couldn’t deliver the required flow. The solution required once again to create shared value: Enel Green Power and Nareva totally refurbished the water well by installing a PV-powered pumping system, in order to secure the most precious resource for thousands of local dwellers.

Over 500 local residents were employed in the wind farm, with over 250 of them coming from local communities. Over 2000 training hours were dedicated to all personnel, ranging from quality, safety, and environmental care. SMEs like travel companies, hotels, restaurants and cleaning companies all benefited from the project and will continue to do so as the wind farm goes online. Furthermore, the local community is already enjoying moving on the refurbished roads and bridges that EGP and Nareva paid for.

The story of Midelt and Morocco demonstrates how green energy can meet its own challenges, like being forward-looking and improving lives day by day.