$57m will fund five renewable energy projects in developing countries from Argentina to Iran
Abu Dhabi, UAE, 18 January, 2015 – The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) today announced USD 57 million in concessional loans for five renewable energy projects in developing countries. The projects to be financed in the second cycle have a combined total capacity of 35 megawatts, bringing reliable and sustainable power to more than 280,000 people in rural communities that lack access to modern energy services.
The loans will go to projects in a geographically diverse set of countries including Argentina, Cuba, Iran, Mauritania and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
“Renewable energy offers the prospect of clean, affordable power to the 1.3 billion people currently off the electricity grid,” said IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin at a press conference today on the sidelines of IRENA’s fifth Assembly. “While renewable energy resources are abundant in many communities suffering from energy poverty, finance is still a key challenge for deployment. That is why the partnership between IRENA and ADFD is so important as a pioneering effort.”
This is the second loan cycle of seven, which together will commit USD 350 million over seven years to the deployment of renewable energy in developing countries, with a total project value of an estimated USD 800 million. The funds from ADFD mobilise other funds and will lead to more than double the invested amount.
Projects approved for funding in the second loan cycle include solar, hydro, hybrid (wind and solar) and geothermal energy. The projects selected represent a mix of renewable energy sources, are innovative, potentially replicable or scalable, and will improve energy access.
Cuba: A 10 megawatt solar energy project is receiving a loan of 15 million dollars. The project will provide energy stability, demonstrate renewable energy’s viability in the country, create jobs and help the environment. More than 5,300 people will benefit from the project.
Iran: A five megawatt, first-of-its-kind, small-scale geothermal project in Ardebil is receiving a loan of six million dollars. The geothermal power plant will produce electricity and thermal energy for rural Ardebil to provide local heating, greenhouse agriculture and fish farming. Governmental organizations such as the electricity, gas and environment departments, and the local population of 150,000 people will benefit from the project.
Mauritania: A one megawatt solar, wind and hydropower hybrid project will receive a loan of six million dollars. The project involves electrification by solar multifunctional platforms for small villages including 10 solar photovoltaic power plants with storage, small wind turbines installed in fishing villages, and the connection of a group of villages with a hydroelectric network. The improved access to electricity will benefit various stakeholders including small villages, rural centres and fishing villages.
St. Vincent and the Grenadines: A 10 to 15 megawatt geothermal project is receiving a loan of 15 million dollars. The project will connect to the energy grid to provide a consistent power source for the entire country and will influence the deployment of additional geothermal projects in the Caribbean. The entire population of 104,000 people will benefit from the project.
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