By: Mai al Abria
MUSCAT: Better technologies are bringing down the production cost of renewable energy. There are many renewable energy projects that are more efficient than cooking gas, said Dr Hilal al Hinai, the Secretary-General of the research council in the workshop of the renewable energy strategic research programme held yesterday. “Through this workshop, we are focusing on the ways to raising efficiency of energy use. We need to design buildings that consume less energy. Later we will focus at the renewable energy”, he said.
The workshop will present the renewable energy strategic programme to get feedback on the proposed research themes from all stakeholders and to facilitate a platform of collaboration between local and international researchers in the field. It also aims at getting benefits from global experience in renewable energy research and applications.
The research programme aims at conducting experimental research and seeks real solutions for national challenges of renewable energy efficiency. These pilot researches will enhance the capacity building, knowledge transfer and will contribute to sustainable development in Oman.
“This workshop comes as part of the accreditation of the strategic programme for the renewable energy. The final accreditation requires the presentation of the programme in such a workshop where it is intensively discussed by international experts. This process has been applied in strategy programme of road accidents, palm trees insect programme and the social monitor programme”, says Dr Saif al Hadabi, assistant secretary general for research and programmes, TRC .
With the partnership of the Public Authority for Electricity and Water, SQU, and other related institutions, the programme is open for any changes that might maximise best utilisation of the renewable energy.
This programme is designed to fill the gaps in the current attempts on the underway renewable energy projects.
“One of the main focus of the programme is to use solar energy for air conditioning in the Sultanate because as it accounts for 80 per cent of the total energy in the summer. The other focus is on the use of renewable energy in domestic water consumption.The renewable energy sources are normally low efficient and are supposed to be implemented at high efficient grounds in order to be exploited optimally.
The programme will also on exploiting latent heat in the oceans and producing electricity directly from the renewable energy without the use of solar cells.
There are some promising projects in the field of renewable energy underway. However they are still at the early stages of operation like the joint project of Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company and Oman’s Rural Areas Electricity Company to produce 50 megawatt of energy by wind. PDO has also a major project to produce steam by solar energy used on oil production.
“There are a set of pilot projects in this area, such as the solar energy project in Al Mazyona, Dhofar that produces about 300 kW. Another is wind power project in Dhofar that produces 50 MW,” said Mohammed al Mahrouqi, Chairman of the Public Authority for Electricity and Water (PAEW).
Another project anticipated to see the light by the end of 2016 is the generation plant at SQU that aims at producing cooling via renewable energy.
SOURCE: OMAN DAILY OBSERVER