MENA needs USD145.7bn investment in power generation amid demand

JEDDAH – Strong economic and demographic growth associated with rapid urbanization has led to an increase in energy demand to meet rising electricity and desalinated water needs in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21) said in their joint report recently.

The report estimates that investments worth $145.7 billion will be needed for power generation from 2013.
Of which, investments worth $63.1 billion will be in the GCC, $21.4 billion in Iran and approximately $53 billion in the combined other countries of the region.
Global demand for renewable energy continued to rise during 2011 and 2012, supplying an estimated 19 percent of global final energy consumption in 2011 (the latest year for which data are available), with a little less than half from traditional biomass.
Useful heat energy from modern renewable sources accounted for an estimated 4.1 percent of total final energy use; hydropower made up about 3.7 percent; and an estimated 1.9 percent was provided by power from wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass, and by biofuels.
Total renewable power capacity worldwide exceeded 1,470 GW in 2012, up about 8.5 percent from 2011. Hydropower rose 3 percent to an estimated 990 GW, while other renewables grew 21.5 percent to exceed 480 GW. Globally, wind power accounted for about
39 percent of renewable power capacity added in 2012, followed by hydropower and solar PV, each accounting for approximately 26 percent.
By the end of 2012, global bio-power capacity was approaching 83 GW, up 12 percent over 2011, with notable increases in some of the BRICS countries.37 Around 350 TWh of electricity was generated worldwide in 2012, a 5 percent increase over the previous year.
Averaging national bio-power generation outputs over
the period 2010-12, the United States had a substantial lead, with Germany second, followed closely by Brazil and China, both of which are gaining ground rapidly.
The main types of commercial bio-power systems are medium- to large-scale direct-fired (similar to most coal- and gas-fired power plants), co-fired, gasifiers, and smaller-scale, modular systems. Together, they produce around 1.4 percent of the world’s electricity generation (compared with coal at 41 percent).
Almost 90 percent of biopower is generated with solid biomass fuels.
Landfill gas, biogas, synthesis gas (also known as syngas), and liquid biofuels are also commonly used for bio-power generation and make up the remaining 10 percent.
With the regional renewable energy sector also continuing to accelerate, governments and experts will gather to debate industry developments, strategy and innovation at the second edition of the Power + Water Leaders Forum in Abu Dhabi, to be held on Sept. 23 at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC).
The dedicated conference runs alongside the Power + Water Middle East exhibition, which takes place from 23-25 September, and will provide an ideal platform for experts to discuss sustainable best practices and innovative solutions across two of the region’s bourgeoning sectors.
A notable line-up of speakers will feature at the one-day forum, including Engineer Khaldon Khashman, Secretary General, Arab Countries Water Utilities Association (ACWUA), and Robin Mills, Head of Consulting at Manaar Energy Consulting.
Experts from the Saudi Electricity Company, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA), Oman Authority for Electricity Regulation and Regulatory Supervision Bureau will be among the first group of panelists, in the morning of the one-day conference to discuss best practice to improve efficiency in power and water programs.
They will be joined later by Dr Michael Kraemer, Senior Associate at Taylor Wessing, Board Member and Legal Counsel for the Emirates Solar Industry Association, who will deliver a presentation about renewable energy, underlining clear policies and standards to drive investments into solar power projects.

Also speaking will be Dr Said Al Sheikh, Senior Vice President and Group chief economist at the National Commercial Bank, who will spotlight Saudi Arabia’s role as a leader and pioneer in regional renewable energy projects, highlighting new opportunities for the private sector.
Commenting on the rise of MENA renewable energy sector, Anita Mathews, Director of Informa Energy Group, organizers of Power + Water Middle East, said: “The development of the region’s renewable energy sector has seen a sharp interest from investors with regional investments set at $2.9 billion in 2012.”
“One of the key themes of the Power + Water Leaders Forum is renewable energy, and the growth of the sector in the MENA region is likely to continue over the next two decades, with over 100 projects currently under development.”
Held in strategic partnership with the Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority (ADWEA), Power + Water Middle East brings together developers, manufacturers, buyers and service providers from a range of sectors in power and water to meet, discuss and invest in the current products and technologies in the related industries.
The exhibition has so far attracted more than 100 exhibitors from 25 countries wishing to network and offer solutions to regional power generation, water and nuclear energy industries.
Power + Water Middle East is run in partnership with Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority (ADWEA) and is supported by the Society of Engineers – UAE and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), who will be organizing a government supported national pavilion at the event.