Solar Projects Are Providing Opportunities for Women in Morocco
JUN 14, 2018 — The World Bank announced on Monday that it had approved $125 million in additional financing for the development and construction of the Noor-Midelt I and II solar power plants in Morocco, a combination solar concentrated solar power (CSP) and Photovoltaic (PV) project which will have a total capacity of between 600 to 800 megawatts (MW).
The financial support is designed to aid Morocco’s adoption of innovative solar technology such as concentrated solar power (CSP) technology.
Morocco already has one CSP project under construction, the 580 MW Noor-Ouarzazate complex which is due to be completed in October this year and will be the world’s largest CSP project — the complex is expected to decrease the country’s dependence on oil by approximately 2.5 million tons per year and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 760,000 tons per year.
The Noor-Ouarzazate solar project will produce enough clean electricity for more than 1 million Moroccans and help the country drastically reduce its carbon emissions and mitigate climate change — it is also empowering women to pursue education, support their families better and land the job of their dreams.
The additional World Bank financing will specifically go toward developing and constructing the Noor-Midelt I and II plants being built under the Noor Solar Plan, a critical component in the country’s goal of producing 52% of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030.
Upon its own completion, the Noor-Midelt complex which is based on a new design combining CSP and traditional solar PV technologies will be even larger and yield an even greater environmental impact.
“The Noor-Midelt power complex seals Morocco’s position as the region’s pioneer in renewable energy,” said said Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, World Bank Country Director for the Maghreb.
“The design of Noor-Midelt relies on proven technologies that will be operated in a pioneering way to take advantage of the benefits of both CSP and PV technologies on a single site,” added Moez Cherif, World Bank Lead Energy Economist for the Maghreb. Specifically, while the project will not have as large storage capacities as a CSP-only project would, it will be able to generate more due to the combination of CSP with PV.
The new design and construction will be undertaken by the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy (MASEN), a privately-owned company which describes itself as being “responsible for managing renewable energy in Morocco.”