Algeria: will gas and solar mean new policies?

Algeria, gas, solar, africa, monetisation, oil, power, review, investmentOil Review Africa speaks to Samuel Ciszuk of IHS about Algeria's $60bn renewable energy programme by 2030

Oil Review Africa speaks to Samuel Ciszuk of IHS about Algeria's $60bn renewable energy programme by 2030

Algeria is upbeat about the potential both of its unconventional gas reserves and of solar power in boosting local and exported power supply. However, it is still unclear whether that potential will become a reality.

It’s an ambitious aim: a 50 per cent LNG production capacity increase by 2012 and a $60bn renewable energy programme by 2030. On the other hand, Algeria does have a few advantages.

Oil & Gas

Firstly it is not only a major oil producer but has a well-established and sizeable gas production industry. In fact official estimates indicate that there is more gas available, albeit much of it is likely to come from tight and shale gas. While actual figures are not yet available, exploration drilling until the end of 2014 could double to between 500 and 600 wells, and energy minister Youcef Yousfi has made it clear that he feels the quantities of gas involved could be vast.

The basic resources on the solar energy side do not even need to be proved: this is a very sun-rich country. Estimates that up to 200,000 jobs, as well as a new source of export earnings, could result are a major incentive to develop a renewable power industry. Nor, given the amount of sunlight available is this a fanciful notion — if, that is, enough research, expertise, technology, manufacturing resources and investment can be harnessed to develop a solar power industry in Algeria.

 

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