Jordan’s renewable energy drive gains momentum
Energy-hungry Jordan has been stepping up efforts to harness renewable sources of energy and introduce more cost-efficient and sustainable power supply.
Jordanian officials say the energy bill eats up a major chunk of the country’s budget every year as the Arab kingdom depends on imports for almost all of its fuel needs.
In fact, the Kingdom has recently kick-started a number of solar and wind power projects, after years of inaction on the issue.
According to the country’s National Energy Strategy 2007-2020, seven per cent of the national energy mix is to be from renewable resources by 2015, rising to ten per cent by 2020.
A Jordanian official told Al Ghad that clean power projects are now on a smoother track as related legislation is in full effect. Some projects are operational now.
Current and planned projects seek to add up to 1,600 megawatts of renewable energy to the national electric grid by 2018. Investments in this domain are expected to touch $2.4 billion by 2025.
Earlier, Jordan was fully dependent on natural gas supply from Egypt for its power generation, but supply came to almost a full halt following the uprising in Egypt.
The West Asian nation was forced to switch to the much costlier heavy fuel and diesel to keep its power plants running, triggering an increase in its budget deficit.
($1 = AED3.67, at the time of publishing)