By Gawdat Bahgat (auth.)
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Others, such as wind, solar, and geothermal, are in a nascent phase of technical maturity and commercial production and deployment. Unlike fossil fuels, almost all countries have access to some forms of renewable energy. For example, solar and ocean energy are widely 16 Alternative Energy in the Middle East distributed. Still, the contribution of renewable energy to the overall energy mix varies substantially from one country to another. Against this background, renewable energy has been expanding rapidly in recent years.
47 The concept integrates all types or renewable energies including concentrating solar-thermal power in desert regions, wind power in coastal areas, hydro power in 36 Alternative Energy in the Middle East mountainous regions, photovoltaics in sunny areas, and biomass and geothermal power where geographic conditions are favourable. Desertec is a largely German-led initiative. on, Munich Re, Siemens, Deutsche Bank, and HSH Nordbank signing up as shareholders. By developing the technical and ecological framework in the deserts of the Middle East and North Africa, the initiative seeks to produce sufficient power to meet around 15 per cent of Europe’s electricity requirements and a substantial portion of the power needs of the producing countries.
The development of wind energy started as a European success story with Denmark and Germany taking the lead. In order to fully utilize wind power heavy investments have been made in offshore wind potential. Another option is to develop wind power on the other side of the Mediterranean where there are areas with excellent wind conditions and the demand remains limited due to extremely low population density. As the Saharan trade windblown coastline is already accessed by the extension of the European electricity grid, considerable amount of renewable wind generated electricity could be transferred.
Alternative Energy in the Middle East by Gawdat Bahgat (auth.)