QatarEnergy has awarded a sizeable contract to South Korean engineering and construction company Samsung C&T to build two solar power plants aimed at generating 875 megawatts of renewable electricity.

The state-owned giant said on Tuesday that it has awarded a contract for its “industrial cities solar power project”.

“This project includes two large-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar power plants to be built in Mesaieed Industrial City and Ras Laffan Industrial City, and is expected to start electricity production by the end of 2024,” it said.

The contract was signed by QatarEnergy Renewable Solutions, a wholly owned affiliate of QatarEnergy tasked with investing in renewable energy and sustainability projects.

The company noted that the 2.3 billion Qatari riyals ($630 million) IC Solar project will result in direct emissions reduction of more than 28 million tonnes of carbon dioxide over its lifetime, especially from the North Field East and North Field South liquefied natural gas expansion projects.

Carbon footprint reduction

QatarEnergy earlier this year outlined its plan to scale up its carbon capture and storage and solar power generation capabilities as part of its drive to reduce the carbon footprint at its facilities by 2035.

“These projects will further reduce the carbon intensity of Qatar’s LNG facilities by 35%, and of its upstream facilities by at least 25% [also by 2035] compared to previous targets of 25% and 15%,” the company claimed.

QatarEnergy chief executive Saad Sherida al Kaabi described IC Solar project as a major step in the implementation of a strategy to diversify Qatar’s energy resources and develop high-efficiency renewable energy.

“It also reaffirms our commitment towards delivery on QatarEnergy’s sustainability strategy and our mid-term target of having 5 gigawatts of solar-generated power by 2035.”

The IC Solar project will be the second utility-scale solar project in Qatar and, together with Al Kharsaa Solar PV Power Plant, it will increase Qatar’s renewable energy generation capacity to 1.7 GW by 2024, the operator said.

“The project will utilise high-efficiency bifacial modules mounted on single-axis trackers as well as cleaning robots that will operate daily to minimise losses due to soiling by removing dust from the PV modules,” it noted.

The Qatari giant earlier unveiled its updated sustainability strategy, targeting “carbon capture and storage technology to capture over 11 million tonnes per annum of CO2 in Qatar by 2035”.

QatarEnergy earlier signed agreements with Shell and South Korea’s Hydrogen Convergence Alliance, known as H2Korea, to co-operate in hydrogen energy, both in Qatar and internationally.

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