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Morocco’s solar power plant plans delayed due to a dispute over the technology used


Morocco’s plan to construct a massive solar power plant, Noor Midelt I, has encountered delays due to disagreements over the technology to be employed, as reported by Reuters on Tuesday.

Three sources close to the project informed the British news agency, emphasizing that the delay arises from a disagreement between the government and the project developer regarding the type of solar technology to utilize.

This delay has impacted the project, with only 831 megawatts (MW) installed thus far, compared to the anticipated 2,000 MW by 2020. «Construction has not even commenced on the planned $2 billion 800 MW Noor Midelt I plant, which was intended to commence operations this year, after the Energy Ministry and grid operator ONEE rejected the proposed CSP technology», stated the sources.

The contract for developing Noor Midelt I was awarded to the state energy agency MASEN in 2019, entrusted to a consortium led by EDF Renouvelables. The project involves a combination of two technologies : photovoltaic (PV) and concentrated solar power (CSP). However, ONEE and the Energy Ministry expressed reservations regarding the reliability of CSP due to issues encountered at another large solar plant in Morocco, Noor Ouarzazate. These concerns prompted lengthy discussions and ultimately delayed the project’s progress, the same sources added.

Despite both parties remaining committed to the project, specifics regarding the chosen technology and project timeline are still being finalized.


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