Construction of the West Bakr wind farm in Egypt has begun. The construction works were launched at a ceremony attended by several Egyptian officials, including the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy, the Minister of Environment and the Minister of Planning.
The West Bakr wind farm will be located 30km northeast of Ras Ghareb in the Gulf of Suez. The project is being developed under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) by Lekela an Independent Power Producer (IPP), a joint venture between UK investment fund Actis and Mainstream Renewable Power. The IPP has awarded the construction of the wind farm to Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy. The German company Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy will install a total of 96 of its SG 2.6-114 turbines that will generate 250 MW. It will maintain them over a period of 15 years.
Lekela said that the installation will increase Egypt’s wind power capacity as the country strives to reach its goal of producing 20% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2022. The project will also reduce carbon dioxide emissions by more than 550,000 tons per year.
The West Bakr wind farm will provide enough electricity for 350,000 Egyptian homes. The project will be entirely financed by Lekela through loans from several investors. These include the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank’s corporate finance arm, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), the former Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), which merged in December 2020 with the Development Credit Authority (DCA).
Lekela will sell electricity from the West Bakr wind farm to the state-owned Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC) under a 20-year power purchase agreement, starting from the commissioning of the wind farm at the end of 2021.