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Egypt Commits to Renewable Energy Targets with New Solar Projects

Egypt is the North-East African country famed for its rich history, Pyramids, and of course, abundant sunshine. Being a partially desert country Egypt would be an obvious contender for projects that involve solar energy. But the country has had a turbulent recent history and solar is not yet the force it could be here. Potentially, all that is set to change as the Egyptian government sets out to meet its renewable energy targets.

KarmSolar Introduces Egypt to Solar Energy

As mentioned above, Egypt has seen a lot of political turmoil in recent years. This meant that other issues such as renewable energy projects and environmental goals were largely ignored. However, Egypt did make a pledge to increase its use of clean energy by the year 2020. The goal set then was that the country would meet 20% of its electricity demand through the use of clean energy sources.

In the past, the biggest push to meet that target was through the implementation of wind-powered sources. More recently, the government has begun to explore other options such as solar power and other sustainable energy sources.

At the moment, the only major renewable energy project of note is a 140 megawatt combined cycle power and solar energy plant. That particular plant is currently running at only 20 megawatts, according to TechCrunch.  Thankfully for a country blessed with lots of sunshine, Egypt is now seriously turning its attention to solar.

France Solar Roadways solar cellsOnly one company in the country currently has the knowledge and expertise to deliver solar projects on an industrial scale.

Founded during that difficult period in 2011, KarmSolar is focused on providing environmentally friendly and sustainable energy solutions.

The Egyptian Solar Technology company now has its first functioning clean energy power station. The project is situated in Sahl Hashish, Hurghada, where the company operates a station producing 2.2 MW.

That is only the first step however, as KarmSolar is looking ahead to more solar power stations in the future. Given the vast potential to harvest the renewable energy, KarmSolar also wants to develop larger sites too. The company also aims to raise the profile of solar energy in the country to encourage consumer and commercial interest in the renewable energy.

Promoting Clean Energy

With an average solar radiation of  around 3,000kWh per square meter annually, there are enough solar opportunities to keep KarmSolar busy for the foreseeable future. The developer is not stopping there however, and is promoting a range of other clean energy solutions in the country.

KarmSolar employees at one of their solar installations. -picture credit: KarmSolar.com

Its targeted projects include using solar power to irrigate farmland and in-house tech development to streamline power usage.  Manufacturing is also now done locally and that has helped to lower the cost of entry for ordinary Egyptians.

Other alternative energy projects being pursued by KarmSolar include a foray into designing and building Eco-friendly homes. KarmBuild focuses on building houses that promote sustainability and energy efficiency. This includes sourcing materials through sustainable methods as well as training architects and builders on aspects of Eco-friendly buildings.

In addition to all the above activities, KarmSolar has also branched into various community-focused initiatives. Tech Hubs and education programs that promote off-grid solutions for large and small organisations such as schools and businesses are just some of these. The company is currently Egypt’s sole provider of high capacity solar solutions but the company is happily trying to change that.

In the TechCrunch article, Ahmed Zahran, the chief executive and co-founder of KarmSolar is quoted as saying:  “While KarmSolar counts as the sole provider of solar energy in Egypt, we hate that status, we see the future of this and we want more people in on it.”

With an outlook like that, the future certainly looks sunny for solar energy and other alternative energy initiatives in Egypt.


Also published on Medium.

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