Published on 25th March 2021
OPEC member Iraq awarded seven projects to generate solar power as part of a plan to produce 10 gigawatts of solar energy by the end of 2030, Iraq Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar said in a statement.
The solar power projects will be scattered across the country and will generate a total of 750-MW, including the largest 300-MW plant in Kerbala, according to the ministry’s statement, which did not disclose the name of the companies which were awarded the contracts, the minister’s statement also noted that Iraq is targeting a 20% share for renewables in its energy mix.
Iraq is in discussions with international companies such as Total SA and some Norwegian developers to build more renewable energy projects in the country, Abdul Jabbar said.
In 2017 Iraq’s installed power generation capacity was mainly based on fossil fuels and stood at around 11.3 GW, with a demand of around 17 GW. Iraq, which controls the world’s 5th largest oil deposits, is suffering from severe power supply shortages due to damage caused to the energy sector during the war. The country, which is also the second-biggest producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, is aiming for 20% of its power generation by 2030 to be from solar, in a move to reduce pressure on its hydrocarbon-powered electricity plants. Iraqis continue to experience several hours of power outages every day.