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Gov’t scraps plans for four renewable energy power plants

By Mohammad Ghazal - Aug 06,2014 - Last updated at Aug 06,2014

AMMAN — The government on Wednesday said it cancelled plans to accept proposals to build four renewable energy power plants with a total capacity of 100 megawatts each. 

“We could not secure the funds to expand the capacity of the national grid to absorb the load of these four projects,” Energy Minister Mohammad Hamed said.

“We were in talks with Gulf Cooperation Council states to allocate part of the $5 billion grant they decided to extend to Jordan for these projects but we did not get their approval,” the minister told The Jordan Times. 

The Gulf states said supporting a project to expand the grid’s capacity is not on this year’s agenda, he added. 

The grid’s capacity stands at 3,200 megawatts at present and can accept another 500 megawatts. 

The ministry has already signed agreements with several companies to build solar and wind energy power plants. It is expected to sign deals to build four more plants with a total capacity of 200 megawatts. 

“The grid can absorb the loads of the plants for which we already reached deals,” the minister said. 

Jordan has one of the highest annual daily averages of solar irradiance in the world with an estimated 330 days of sunshine per year, while wind speeds in the country are as high as 7.5 metres per second and up to 11.5 metres per second in hilly areas.

The Kingdom, which imports about 97 per cent of its energy needs, is working on a series of renewable energy projects that will increase the contribution of local energy resources to the energy grid from the current 3 per cent to 40 per cent by 2020.

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