*First mega photovoltaic station in Qatar with a capacity of 700MW Kahramaa to be installed in 2022
*Network of electric vehicle charging stations being set up
All meters in Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation’s (Kahramaa) grid will be smart meters by the end of 2020, it was announced on Tuesday during the opening ceremony of the ‘2nd Conference on Smart Grid and Renewable Energy (SGRE2019)’ held in Doha.
Speaking before the conference, Kahramaa president Essa bin Hilal al-Kuwari said customer engagement has improved under its Advanced Metering Infrastructure project, adding that more than 320,000 smart meters are currently installed in its grid, connected with multiple smart technologies, including fiber optics.
“Kahramaa’s smart efforts also include water sustainability and quality, which encourages innovation and new technologies, especially to decrease water losses and advanced desalination techniques,” said al-Kuwari, who is also chairman of the Smart Grid Centre at Texas A&M at Qatar and honourary chair of the conference.
Al-Kuwari also announced that Kahramaa has finished its smart grid roadmap, in collaboration with Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station and Texas A&M at Qatar. He said the smart grid vision is to transform Qatar’s grid into a secure, sustainable, and digitally-enabled grid that provides reliable and quality energy for stakeholders by 2026.
“Like any smart utility, Kahramaa faces challenges while upgrading its network. This includes continuous need for investment, technology choice and upgrade, and cyber security issues. However, our grid is highly-capable of monitoring and controlling all its assets and operations together with its networks of smart meters, renewable energy, and electric vehicles, while optimising Kahramaa’s business and engaging its customers.
“A successful example of Kahramaa’s grid upgrade is a condition monitoring project of all substations, which achieved net savings of $36mn and reduced faults by more than 50%. Customers’ engagement has also improved with the Advanced Metering Infrastructure project.
Al-Kuwari emphasised that Qatar is committed to the Paris Agreement Goals to combat climate change and to mitigate green-house emission effects.
“Qatar is currently preparing the first ‘carbon neutral’ World Cup in 2022. To further help in reducing emissions and diversifying energy sources, Qatar has set goals to increase the share of renewable energy. In this regard, Kahramaa will install the first mega photovoltaic station in Qatar with a capacity of 700MW in 2022.
“Kahramaa is currently working to finalise Qatar’s renewable energy strategy by the end of 2020. Moreover, Kahramaa is currently installing a network of electric vehicle charging stations. This includes installing the first photovoltaic energy storage EV charging station, as well as the first e-buses charging units in Qatar,” al-Kuwari said.
He added: “Furthermore, policy and specifications are in final revisions with the support of the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC). In addition, Kahramaa has launched the National Programme for Conservation & Energy Efficiency ‘Tarsheed’, which was able to reduce carbon emissions by almost 4mn tonnes and achieve financial savings of almost $0.5bn in 2018 through technical, legal, and awareness initiatives.”
The conference, which concludes today is sponsored by Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Industrial Electronics Society, Power Electronics Society, and Power and Energy Society, among other sponsors.
The goal of the conference is to generate a long-term smart grid research agenda with renewable energy adaptation.
Al-Kuwari also highlighted “the impressive economic growth” that Qatar witnessed under the wise leadership of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, and lauded the MoTC’s Qatar Smart Programme (Tasmu), which was designed to accelerate Qatar’s movement towards a digital economy and smart cities.
Al-Kuwari said: “This economic and digital growth increases energy demand and the need for an efficient energy infrastructure. Smart, innovative grids are key to the energy transformation required to meet Qatar’s climate and energy responsibilities.”
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