Qatar hopes to harness the nation's major solar power potential
Representatives from the Qatar Foundation, Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa), Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI), and others are set to take part in the Solar Qatar Summit, October 26-27 at the Ritz Carlton in Doha.
The conference has special significance in the nation, which is in the midst of efforts to diversify its economy and move away from using fossil fuels to produce Qatar’s energy.
It’s an initiative that has already seen major efforts. Qatar’s government has started on several major solar projects, including large-scale solar power plants, solar panel production and even a solar water desalination project. Solar capabilities are being designed into the construction of five of the stadiums to be used in the 2022 World Cup.
Kahramaa expects its first solar power facility to go operational in 2016 with a generation capacity of up to 15 megawatts. The new power station will be in Duhail, covering an area of more than 24 acres. Kahramaa aims to generate 200 megawatts of solar power by 2020.
To aid in the growth of Qatar’s solar capabilities, QEERI is creating a solar map to identify areas across the country that receive the highest intensity of solar radiation.
The growth of solar energy in Qatar is not without challenges, however. The expense of solar and the lack of a renewable energy policy framework pose a challenge to the growth of the sector in Qatar – challenges industry leaders hope to address at the Solar Qatar Summit.