Lebanon looks to expand CSP activities in light of electricity shortages

The agencies say the feasibility study would follow the success of the solar thermal industry and develop a plan for effectively implementing CSP technology in the Byblos region, with good potential to replicate this technology in other areas. It is hoped the study will assess CSP technology and analyze the construction of a 50 MW CSP power plant.

They say that despite large government investments in the power sector, demand still exceeds supply, and blackouts are common in peak demand times. Renewable energy currently plays a minor role in the energy mix in Lebanon. However, they continue, the country experiences over 300 days of sunshine a year, making solar energy one of the better alternatives for a renewable energy source.

The agencies go on to say that increasing renewable energy sources is a policy priority for the Government of Lebanon, as the country imports nearly 99 percent of its energy due to a lack of indigenous sources. High costs and insufficient supplies have lead to frequent electricity outages, they continue, which have resulted in “significant damage” to the economy and the tourism industry.

The study will include an analysis determining the best CSP technology to use; a techno-economic assessment; engineering, procurement and construction cost estimates; and a project implementation plan for a 50 MW CSP power plant. The U.S. firm selected will be paid in U.S. dollars from a $338,270 grant to the Grantee from the USTDA.