Posted on: Monday 27 August, 2012 7:21
|Report: Half of Saudi Arabia’s power generation comes from natural gas
Forty-nine percent of Saudi Arabia’s power generation depends on natural gas. The remaining portion comes from liquid fuels with renewable power resources accounting for a negligible share, reported the Kuwait Financial Center (Markaz).
The situation is set to change as nuclear and solar power are increasingly seen as an option to satisfy the growing demand for electricity in the Kingdom, the report said.
According to the report, Saudi Arabia is the biggest investor in the power sector among the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states as the Kingdom strives hard to keep pace with the increasing demand for electricity due to population growth and a high level of urbanization.
Based on estimates of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Saudi population is set to increase from the current 28 million to reach 31 million and 37 million by 2015 and 2020 respectively. Urban population accounts for 83.6 percent of the total population in the Kingdom, which is growing at 2.2 percent annually, the report said. Economic development has immensely contributed to energy consumption in the Kingdom.
Power consumption in Saudi Arabia has grown at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6 percent over the last five years and is predicted to grow at a similar pace over the next few years, the report said. Saudi Arabia is considered as one of the biggest global nations with respect to residential consumption of electricity. Diversification of the Kingdom’s economy is set to increase the share of the industrial sector in power consumption, according to the report. Since its inception in 2000, the generation capacity of Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) has grown by 2.5 times. Its capacity is currently over 40,000 MW. SEC sees a 46 percent increase in sold energy by 2016 compared to 2010 figures, the report said.
Total power transmission of SEC has increased by almost 50-60 percent and total transmission lines have increased by almost 75 percent. The number of customers of SEC has also increased by over 70 percent during this period, according to the report.
SEC plans to pump fresh investments of nearly $ 100 billion (SR 375 billion) to meet the growing demand for power. The Saudi government plans to create an additional 30,000 MW of generation capacity as part of a plan to ramp up power generation capacity by twofold by 2030, the report noted.