First wind-power farm in Lebanon
Four companies have applied for a tender to build a wind-power farm with a capacity of between 50 and 100 MW, the Ministry of Energy and Water (MoEW) said. The deadline to apply for the tender was on June 25.
One of the applicants is a joint venture between Hawa Akkar, a Lebanese firm, Greece-based Construction Contractors Company (CCC), and China-based wind turbine manufacturer, Goldwind. Albert Khoury, Chairman of Hawa Akkar, said the partnership with CCC and Goldwind is “a vote of confidence for our project.” According to Khoury, the requirements for applying for the tender stipulated that each applicant should have an annual turnover of at least $100 million and should have 20 MW of installed wind power. “Together with our partners we have a combined turnover of $8 billion, and 16,000 MW of installed wind power,” he said.
Another firm applying for the tender is Lebanon Wind Power, a joint venture between local group Debbas and a French partner. The third applicant is a joint venture between Batco, Lebanon-based firm Sustainable Akkar, Turkish firm Tefirom, and the local Associated Consulting Engineers (ACE).
The identity of the fourth applicant will be disclosed shortly.
A technical committee comprising ten experts from the MoEW, the Electricité Du Liban (EDL), and the Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation (LCEC) will open the tenders and evaluate the offers. The MoEW will disclose the date of the tender appraisal later.
The Cabinet’s approval is needed to launch any project involving energy production. The wind farm will generate electricity from wind and sell it to the EDL.
The MoEW plans to sign a contract with the winning firm once the tender procedures are finalized. The electricity law does not allow direct private sector involvement in energy production, however it does not prohibit leasing power generated by private firms. “Law 462 has not been amended to allow private firms to produce energy, but after signing the contract for leasing energy from power-generating vessels, the MoEW found that it could apply a similar procedure for leasing renewable energy from the private sector,” said Ziad Zein, Public Relations officer at LCEC.
According to Zein, the possibility of building more than one wind farm depends on the number of companies that fit the project’s strict technical and financial requirements. He said strong financial capacity and a prior experience in wind energy production are among the main requirements for the firms to qualify.