As part of its national strategy to promote renewable energy, Morocco has commissioned a new wind farm in Boujdour, in occupied territory of Western Sahara.
The kingdom’s National Office of electricity and drinking water (ONEE) and the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy (MASEN), signed the Boujdour Plant building contracts with the Moroccan Nareva Holding and Italy’s Enel Green Power consortium on Tuesday, November 19, in Rabat.
With construction work set to begin in 2021, the Boujdour project is the second project out of the five wind farms commissioned under the 850 MW Integrated Wind Energy Project. The project has a budget of over $1.22 billion.
The wind projects are located in the city of Midelt (180 MW), Jbel Lahdid in Essaouira (200 MW), Tiskrad in Tarfaya (100 MW), and Tangier II (70 MW).
The Boujdour wind farm is located about 7 kilometers northeast of the city of Boujdour (Boujdour Province), and required an investment of MAD 4 billion, said a joint statement from the ONEE and MASEN.
The statement noted that the “Nareva Holding – Enel Green Power” consortium, associated with “Siemens Gamesa Renewables”, won the international call for tenders in 2016 for the development, design, financing, construction, operation, and maintenance of the 850 MW Integrated Wind Energy Project.
The 850 MW Integrated Wind Energy Project will save Morocco approximately 2,380,000 tons CO2/year, equivalent to the consumption of a city the size of Casablanca, the statement concluded.
Morocco’s national energy strategy
Morocco has established a national energy strategy, with the objective of reaching 52% of electricity consumption based on renewable energy by 2030.
Morocco’s reliance on foreign countries for electricity reduced from 98% to 92% thanks to the national energy strategy adopted in 2009, the minister of Energy, Mining, and Sustainable Development said at a two-day press conference at Green Park Energy in Benguerir in April.
The strategy seeks to reduce the country’s energy consumption levels, currently standing at an estimated at MAD 70 billion per year
Morocco aims to generate 42% of its electricity from renewable energies by 2020. To achieve its high aspirations, Morocco has heavily invested in solar energy through the world’s 2nd largest solar plant, the Noor Ouarzazate project and the soon to be constructed Noor Midelt I.
The Noor-Ouarzazate complex was built on an area of more than 3,000 hectares with an investment of $400 million loans from the World Bank and an additional $216 million from the Clean Technology Fund.