Total and Marubeni to build 800MW Qatar solar plant

Groundbreaking photovoltaic generator is scheduled for completion in 2022 in bid to make World Cup carbon-neutral


French oil and gas company Total and Japanese conglomerate Marubeni have won the rights to build Qatar’s first utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) project.

The companies will hold a combined 40 per cent stake in the power plant, to be built west of Qatar’s capital Doha, in Al-Kharsaah. Siraj Energy, a joint venture between Qatar Petroleum and Qatar Electricity & Water Company, will own the rest.

Full investment for the project is estimated to be 1.7 billion Qatari riyals ($467m, £356m, €421m).

The 800-megawatt Al Kharsaah development will use more than 2 million bifacial solar modules, making it one of the largest of its type in the world. Bifacial panels expose both sides of the cells to sunlight, increasing total energy generation.

The project will sell power to Kahramaa under a 25-year power supply deal. The first 350 megawatts will be operational next year with the full project scheduled for completion in 2022 in time for the football World Cup.

No information has been disclosed about the tender’s final price.

Qatar has pledged to make the Fifa World Cup, which takes place every four years, carbon-neutral.

In November, Dubai claimed to have taken the record with a bid of 1.7 US cents per kilowatt-hour for the next 900-megawatt phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. ACWA Power, the winner of that tender, is already using bifacial modules in a completed phase of the same solar park.

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