Masdar to build Yemen’s first large-scale solar plant


Masdar, an Abu Dhabi-based renewables developer, is set to build a 120 MW solar plant in Yemen. The developer signed a joint cooperation agreement with Yemen’s Ministry of Electricity and Energy earlier this month. The deal includes the construction of transmission lines and transformer stations.

The solar project will be built in Aden. The 120 MW plant will be the “first and the largest strategic project to generate electricity through clean and renewable energy” in Yemen, according to the Yemeni Energy Minister Manea bin Yameen.

The ministry has reportedly started conducting surveys for the project. It did not reveal the project completion date or any other details, but it noted that the solar plant will reduce the cost of electricity generation during the daytime and contribute to lowering Yemen’s carbon footprint.

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According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Yemen’s cumulative renewable capacity was 253 MW at the end of 2021, all from solar. Reports from local NGOs and the Ministry of Electricity and Energy put the country’s total installed solar capacity between 300 MW and 400 MW in 2018. Rooftop PV and small-scale solar applications like water pumps are expected to account for all the installed capacity.

According to a recent paper by Berlin-based Energy Access and Development Program (EADP), solar become the main source of energy for Yemeni households after 2016 – two years after the start of its ongoing civil war. EADP said that 75% of the urban population and 50% of the rural population in Yemen have access to solar energy.

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