By Aynur Karimova
Azerbaijan, a country rich with both hydrocarbon and alternative energy resources, is planning to complete a new project of a solar power plant next year.
The State Agency on Alternative and Renewable Energy Sources of Azerbaijan told AzerTag state news agency that the project of the Garadagh-Sangachal solar power plant will be completed in 2016.
It is planned to install nearly 36,000 solar panels produced with the latest technologies and to create a reliable electricity transmission system in the plant.
The government decided to generate solar energy as solar lights produce no pollution or harm to the environment.
The construction of the solar power plant in the Sangachal settlement of Baku's Garadagh district was launched in 2014 by Azalternativenerji LLC.
With its a total capacity of 9 MW will ensure electricity needs of the Sangachal settlement and the whole Garadagh district.
Azerbaijan, which enjoys good climatic conditions for developing alternative energy on the backdrop of the world oil-price crisis, has an opportunity to invest revenues from hydrocarbon exports to the development of the alternative energy sector.
Last year, the volume of investment made in the development of the alternative energy sector of the country exceeded 63 million manats ($60 million), some 35 million manats ($33.3 million) of which was invested in the development of solar energy, as most of the country’s potential in this area is accounted for solar energy, which is estimated at 5,000 MW.
Currently, the share of alternative energy sources in Azerbaijan's energy basket is less than 1 percent, mostly represented by small hydroelectric power plants. Now it is planned to increase this share to 20 percent of the total volume of energy consumption in Azerbaijan by 2020, which requires 7 billion manats ($6.7 billion) of capital investment.
Within five years, Azerbaijan plans to build up to 100 facilities for alternative energy.
Aynur Karimova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Aynur_Karimova
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