Expect to see more of these as Suez Cement secures its long term viability in Egypt with private wind farm.
The good news? Egypt is getting its first privately owned wind farm. The not so green news? It will be used to generate power for Suez Cement, a company owned by the Italian corporation Italcementi. After Egypt’s golden age of architecture peaked, the majestic pyramids and self-aggrandizing Pharoanic temples and tombs belonging to a bygone era, few Egyptian architects have distinguished themselves.
The country’s architectural aesthetic has been replaced with a desperate effort to accommodate 85 million people on a shoestring budget. And cement is frequently an affordable option. The 120MW wind farm will give the company sufficient energy security to ensure that cement supplies for thousands of half-finished block apartment buildings will not abate any time soon.
The energy generating arm of the corporation, which has offices in 22 countries, Italgen first signed a memorandum of understanding with Egypt’s ministry for energy and electricity in 2007.
This agreement gave the company permission to construct a wind farm with a generation capacity of up to 400MW.
With potential to prevent approximately 257,000 tonnes of harmful carbon dioxide emissions, the $200 million wind farm is slated to be built astride the Red Sea near the Gulf El Zeit area.
Clean wind powers dirty cement
The first private wind farm, Italgen’s general director announced that a large portion of the energy it generates will be used to produce cement for Suez Cement, a company owned by the Italian group.
Frequent power cuts, particularly during Egypt’s hotter summer months, have a crippling impact on businesses. By building their own wind farm, Italgen ensures a secure energy supply to keep their operations going even when the national grid is overwhelmed.
Bring on private green investment
Following the revolution in January, Egypt’s overall economic health has plummeted. Without private investments in the country’s green sector, it is unlikely to take off anytime soon.
Albeit a means to perpetuate the endless brown blight on the country’s otherwise beautiful landscape, Italgen’s wind farm is a groundbreaking step in the right direction to a cleaner Egypt.
:: Ahram Online
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