MAY 11, 2024

Oman launches strategic study on energy mix, storage options

MUSCAT: Nama Power and Water Procurement Company (PWP), the single buyer of output from power generation and water desalination projects in the Sultanate of Oman, is making headway in the implementation of a strategic study aimed at achieving an ideal mix of energy resources to sustain the country’s energy requirements over the next 15 years. In conjunction with this initiative, technological options to support energy storage will be identified as well.

The ‘Optimum Energy Mix and Storage Options Study’ is one of a large portfolio of initiatives currently in various stages of development and implementation with the overall goal to drive Oman’s Net Zero journey. It spans projects and programmes to support the adoption of large-scale solar and wind based renewables, enhance energy efficiency, plan for future capacity and grid requirements, secure new potable water desalination capacity, and support the digitalisation of services in the sector.

“PWP commissioned a strategic study in coordination with different stakeholders to model and analyse scenarios relating to the transition path for Oman’s generation mix until 2040, with a particular focus on the transition from today’s predominantly gas-based system to a mixed system,” said Ahmed bin Salim al Abri, Acting CEO – Nama PWP.

“The study will assess the different energy storage technologies and provide a long term energy storage strategy,” he added in the CEO’s Message featured in the company’s newly published 2023 Annual Report.

Earlier, Abdulaziz bin Said al Shidhani, Chairman of the Board of Directors, underlined PWP’s continued focus on delivering reliable and efficient power and water capacity while promoting sustainable energy development.

“In 2024 and going forward, the company plans to focus its resources on renewable energy projects, including solar and wind IPPs as well as strategic study in support of this direction such as: the optimum energy mix and energy storage options study. During 2024, Manah I Solar IPP and Manah II Solar IPP will continue its construction and commissioning activities. On the desalination front, the construction of Al Ghubrah III IWP will commence and Barka V IWP is scheduled to commence commercial operation by Q2,” he stated in the Chairman’s Message.

With an eye on renewable energy targets set for 2030 and 2040, PWP has lined up a number of solar and wind-based Independent Power Projects (IPPs) for procurement over the next several years.

While Manah Solar 1 and Manah Solar II, each of 500MW of solar PV capacity, are currently under construction in Al Dakhiliya Governorate, the groundwork for the procurement of a new mega solar project of 500 MW, named Ibri III Solar IPP, has been initiated as well.

At the same time, five Wind IPPs are being prepped for development in key locations around the country, according to Nama PWP. “PWP conducted a techno-economic study for three wind projects at Duqm, Jalaan Bani Bu Ali, and Dhofar to assess the environmental and economic viability of the projects. As part of its Wind Resource Assessment, PWP gathered additional one-year ground wind data at Ras Madrakah and Mahoot. This data will serve as a foundation for evaluating the feasibility of wind projects at each site. The company has also initiated the development activities of five wind projects at Duqm, Jalaan Bani Bu Ali, Sadah, Mahoot and Harweel.”

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