Suntech Power Holdings, the world’s largest solar panel manufacturer announced today the supply of 5 megawatts of Suntech solar energy modules for a 10 megawatt solar farm to power Masdar City in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
The 10 megawatt solar energy system is expected to produce over 17 million kilowatt-hours of clean electricity annually and reduce carbon emissions by over 15,000 metric tons per year. The solar farm, costing around AUD $75 million, is scheduled to be completed and connected to the electric grid in March this year.
Often criticised for its excesses thanks to revenue from rich oil reserves, Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City will be the world’s first zero waste, carbon neutral city and according to the developers, the first model of a sustainable city.
Commenced in 2006, the Masdar City project is expected to cost AUD$ 33 billion and take eight years to build, with the first phase scheduled to be complete and ready for occupancy sometime this year. Masdar City will be home to 50,000 people and 1,500 businesses and will cover 6.5 square kilometers.
The initial 10 megawatt solar farm will power construction of the city and be expanded on greatly in the years ahead. Solar panels will also adorn rooftops throughout the city, taking installed solar energy capacity to an estimated 130 megawatts. Wind farms will also be constructed outside the walled city, capable of producing up to 20 megawatts of electricity. Other forms of renewable energy to be implemented include geothermal power and hydrogen power.