Power Generation

Saudis plan for 4,750 MW from gas by 2017

September 2014

SAUDI Electricity Company (SEC) plans to bring online more than 4,750 MW of natural gas-fired generating capacity in Riyadh between 2015 and 2017.

“A power plant known as PP10 will have an additional 1,150 MW operational from May 2015,” an official of the SEC was quoted as saying by the Saudi Gazette daily newspaper. “Two other plants, PP13 and PP14, with a combined capacity of 3,600 MW, would come online in August 2017.”

Meanwhile, some units of plant PP12, which will have a capacity of 1,740 MW, have started operations.

SEC’s total available generating capacity nationally was 61,625 MW at the end of June this year. SEC will spend SR622 billion ($166 billion) between now and 2023 on adding 40,000 MW of installed generating capacity and expanding transmission and distribution networks, according to SEC chief executive Ziyad Alshiha.

The SEC is currently executing projects amounting to SR150 billion ($40 billion) and planning to implement electric projects worth more than SR500 billion ($133.2 billion) during its developmental plans for the next 10 years to meet to the large demand for electric service in the kingdom.

In its annual report for the year 2013, the company said that the number of subscribers to SEC reached 7,142,816 at the end of the year 2013 in (12,644) cities, towns and villages, accounting for 99 per cent of the kingdom’s population.

The report pointed out that the available generation capacity in 2013 amounted to 58,462 MW. It has added 4,873 MW of combined capacity to service as part of its new five-year plan launched in early 2013. It targets an additional 20,000 MW until the year 2018.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia’s energy research centre, King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (K A Care) has signed an agreement with the Chinese National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) to co-operate on developing and producing nuclear and renewable energy to meet Saudi domestic demand, says The Australian newspaper.

The Saudi government estimates that electricity demand alone will require more than 120 gigawatts (GW) of capacity by 2032, and has set a goal that half of that should be generated from non-fossil fuels such as nuclear, solar, wind, waste and geothermal. It wants solar energy, for example, to provide up to 41 GW by 2032, or almost 30 per cent of the total capacity, with nuclear providing 17 GW and wind 9 GW.

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