Speakers from Qatar’s leading companies and industry experts will highlight the various initiatives undertaken to promote solar energy in the country at an upcoming energy summit in Doha, Qatar.

Power Qatar Summit 2015, incorporating Solar Qatar Summit will take place on October 26 and 27 at The Ritz Carlton, Doha.

“With ample amount of renewable resources at its disposal, the GCC region is harnessing the power of renewable energy technologies to its full potential,” said Brad Hariharan, regional director, Expotrade Middle East, organisers of the event.

“The state of Qatar has set a benchmark with its implementation of massive innovative programs in deploying large solar power plants.”

In line with the vision to promote sustainability and environmental awareness and reduce dependency on fossil fuels, the government has implemented several solar energy projects, including large-scale solar power plants, solar desalination projects and solar panel manufacturing plants.

Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa) has undertaken tangible measures to transform Qatar into a regional solar hub. Kahramaa’s first solar power facility with a generation capacity of 10 to 15MW is expected to be operational by 2016.

The solar power station will be located at Duhail, covering an area of over 100,000 square meters. Kahramaa has targeted a generation capacity of 200MW through solar power by 2020.

To meet the expected increase of power demand in the region, Qatar Foundation (QF) has undertaken and completed the Solar-Smart Grid project, which is also the first commercial photovoltaic (PV) project to be granted approval for grid connection from Kahramaa. According to industry estimate, Qatar Foundation’s solar energy smart-grid-enabled systems generate up to 85 percent of Qatar’s total solar energy output.

Tapping its tremendous solar energy potential, Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI) recently announced its plans to set up a solar map within the next year. The map will help identify locations across the country that receives high intensity of solar radiation to install solar cells for power generation.

With Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup, the government plans to enhance the use of renewable energy by building five solar stadiums using innovative solar-powered cooling technology that will mitigate the heat and cool the stadium. While the country has excellent solar energy potential, price competiveness and lack of a renewable energy policy framework poses a challenge to the growth of the solar power in the region.

Source: Trade Arabia