The UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) announced that it has secured 3.7 million euros from the European Union to finance renewable energy projects in Lebanon. The move supports the country’s ambitious target to cover 30% of its energy consumption from renewables by 2030.
Minister of Industry, George Boujikian, and UNIDO Representative in Lebanon, Emmanuel Kalenzi discussed several joint projects that are in the process of implementation between the ministry of industry and the UN organization. The pair stressed the need to establish new projects for the benefit of the industrial sector, its development, and modernisation. During the meeting with Lebanese Industry Minister, George Bouchikian, UNIDO Representative in Lebanon, Emmanuel Kalenzi, said, the new donation will boost the use of renewable energy in industrial projects in Lebanon. For his part, Bouchikian praised the European initiative through UNIDO, as “it is very necessary and important, to rely on alternative energy sources other than oil, which saves costs and reduces emissions and pollution.” The minister also emphasised the need to establish new industrial projects, to ensure the development and modernisation of the sector.
Hydropower is the most established renewable energy resource in Lebanon and contributes to around 4.5% of the energy mix with a nominal capacity of 280 MW. Lebanon is currently looking to expand its hydropower; however, the consistent challenge has been intermittent rainfalls and poor maintenance. Wind energy is also another untapped resource in Lebanon with extremely restricted production. According to the Wind Atlas report, Lebanon has the potential to produce approximately 5,400 MW of wind energy. The tender approved by the Ministry of Energy and Water (MEW) of 200 MW in Akkar looks promising, the UN believes. In fact, Electricite du Liban (EDL), the national utility agency, will sell power again and provide a stable electric current for around 145,000 households.
Lastly, solar energy is another valuable resource in Lebanon. With around 3000 hours of sunshine, the addition of this energy source to the national grid could greatly contribute to the growth of clean energy in Lebanon. Solar energy currently represents around .26% of the country’s energy mix. To grow this energy source, the MEW is launching two separate bids for solar farms with a total production capacity of around 450 MW.