EDF, Masdar Secure Record Wind Tender
A consortium of renewable developers has secured the tender to build the largest wind farm in the Middle East at a record strike price of US$21.30 per megawatt hour.
The tender for the Dumat Al Jandal wind farm was awarded to the consortium led by French firm EDF Renewables and Saudi group Masdar. Located in the Al Jawf Province in northwestern Saudi Arabia, the 400-megawatt farm will require significant project cargo transport during construction and start-up.
“This success reflects the quality of our partnership with Masdar which has enabled us to jointly submit the most competitive bid. We are delighted to be awarded this first wind project in the country, which is set to be the most powerful wind farm in the Middle East,” said Bruno Bensasson, senior executive president at EDF Group.
Rival bidder Engie placed a closely matched bid of $23.62/MWh with the Saudi Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources.
NREP Targets Rapid Growth
The wind farm is under development as part of the National Renewable Energy Program, which aims to substantially increase the share of renewables in the total energy mix, targeting 3.45 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2020.
“This new project demonstrates our ambitions in the country and represents another step forward under the EDF Group’s Cap 2030 strategy, which aims to double its renewable energy capacity by 2030 – both in France and worldwide – to 50 gigawatts”, Bensasson added.
The Saudi government has revised targets upwards this year, with plans to tender 2.2 gigawatts of solar in 2019 alone, and long-term solar targets of 20 gigawatts by 2023 rising to 40 gigawatts by 2030.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has set a clear energy strategy to substantially increase the share of renewables in its total energy mix to 10 percent by 2023. The selection of Masdar and EDF to develop the Kingdom’s first utility-scale wind power plant is a significant achievement,” said Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO of Masdar.
German Coalition Backs Offshore Push
In Germany support for increased renewable generation in the energy mix was also voiced this week by a coalition of industry organizations, including the BWE, BWO, Stiftung Offshore-Windenergie, VDMA Power Systems and WAB.
“Political conditions are slowing down the development of offshore wind energy in Germany … The opportunity to launch a special contribution for offshore wind of at least 1.5 GW must be seized. There must be no further delay,” the coalition stated.
Photo: Dumat Al Jandal wind farm. Credit: DAJ