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Bahrain signs deal for its biggest solar park

A man in Manama, Bahrain, uses a welding mask to watch a solar eclipse. In 2021 just 0.1 percent of Bahrain's total electricity generating capacity came from renewables Reuters/Hamad I Mohammed
A man in Manama watching a solar eclipse. In 2021 just 0.1 percent of Bahrain's capacity came from renewables such as solar
  • 72MW plant to be located in Sakhir
  • Project makes up 28% of renewables goal
  • Bahrain’s 2021 per capita emissions world’s highest

Bahrain has signed deals to build a 72 megawatt solar power plant in what will be the largest of its kind in the kingdom.

The project, located in the southern region of Sakhir, will form part of Bahrain’s push to cut its carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2035 and hit its net zero target by 2060.

The plant will comprise rooftop, ground-mounted and car park solar power systems and electric vehicle charging stations at Bahrain International Circuit, University of Bahrain, Exhibition World Bahrain and Al Dana Amphitheatre.

The value of the project was not revealed.

Yasser bin Ibrahim Humaidan, minister of electricity and water affairs, said the solar power project would make up 28 percent of the kingdom’s goal of generating 250MW from renewable energy sources by 2025.

Bahrain had the highest per capita carbon dioxide emissions worldwide in 2021 at 26.7 metric tons per person, according to Statista.

In May, APM Terminals Bahrain, operator of Khalifa Bin Salman Port, launched a solar power project worth approximately BHD3.8 million ($10 million). It is intended to make the port self-sufficient for energy by the end of 2023.

Last month, Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) commissioned three solar charging stations to cater for electric vehicles and solar-electric powered industrial personnel carriers (PCs) being driven within the smelter’s premises. 

The three solar charging stations will contribute to an estimated combined savings of around 110,000 KW/hr per year leading to a reduction of 42 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

The country had a mere 12MW of renewable capacity in 2021, just 0.1 percent of its total electricity generating capacity, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency.