Mecca Seeks to Lead Saudi Arabia’s Solar Energy Expansion
Bloomberg | Wael Mahdi | 9.23.12
The city on Jan. 5 plans to select from a group of at least 20 bidders competing to build and operate facilities producing 385 gigawatt-hours per year of power including 100 megawatts of solar capacity, said Mayor Osama al-Bar.
“No city in Saudi Arabia owns power-generation assets, and we want to be first city that owns power plants and hopefully the first in the Muslim world,” al-Bar said in an interview on Sept. 16 in the nation’s capital, Riyadh.
The plans are the latest indication that the desert kingdom is stepping up efforts to diversify its sources of energy as economic and population growth threaten to erode Saudi Arabia’s status as the world’s biggest oil exporter.