Riyadh –Saudi Aramco said it has received the first wind turbine, which will start operating in Saudi Arabia in January, marking a historic milestone for renewable energy in the Kingdom.
Supplied by GE, the 2.75-120 wind turbine will provide power to Saudi Aramco’s Bulk Plant located in Turaif, in northwest Saudi Arabia.
This project is part of nationwide plans to diversify energy supplies and to meet an increase in demand.
“The first electricity is expected to be supplied to the Saudi Aramco bulk plant once commissioning of the wind turbine is completed in January 2017,” Aramco said in a statement.
Saudi Arabia is planning to generate 9.5 gigawatts of electricity from renewable energy as part of Saudi Vision 2030.
The statement added that the demonstration project has been developed by Saudi Aramco in partnership with GE to highlight the viability of deploying wind power in the Kingdom.
“Since the inception of its Renewable Energy team in 2010, Saudi Aramco has been actively pursuing opportunities in support of the Kingdom’s goal for the integration of renewable energy in the energy mix,” Aramco said.
It added that in 2012, Saudi Aramco commenced an extensive resource measurement program that confirmed the Kingdom’s exceptional wind resource as perhaps one of the best in the region.
“Wind energy will become a key source of power under the National Renewables Program, which will deliver a combined 9,500 Mega Watts to the Kingdom from wind and solar energy by 2023,” the statement read.
Abdulkarim Al Ghamdi, Saudi Aramco’s Executive Head for Power Systems said: “Saudi Aramco is actively promoting the reduction of energy intensity across the Kingdom by advocating responsible policies, awareness, and energy innovation. This milestone has been made possible with the skills and knowledge Saudi Aramco has attained over decades as the Kingdom’s reliable supplier of energy and those of our partner, GE, as a wind industry leader.”
The new wind turbine will generate 2.75 megawatts of power at its peak, enough to power around 250 Saudi households, the company said.