Iran’s Ministry of Energy announced that the country’s power generation from renewable sources is witnessing a significant rise, contributing to the curb in energy-related emissions.
Iran’s Ministry of Energy said on Monday that total power output from renewables in a period between March 21 and October 22, 2019 amounted to nearly 4.3 terawatt hours (TWh), saying the production led to a decrease of 2.974 million tons (megaton) in the greenhouse gas emissions that could have come through other forms of electricity generation.
The ministry’s press service Paven said in a report that renewables had helped reduce burning fossil fuels for generation of electricity by more than 1.23 billion cubic meters, adding that more than 952 million liters of water had also been saved through the process in the seven-month period.
The report said generation through renewable sources prevented network waste, which mostly comes through heat or vibration in the infrastructure and components, by 476 gigawatt hours while cutting around 18 kilotons of local pollutants that are released through conventional power generation methods.
Iran has a total renewables capacity of 834 megawatts, capable of producing 7.3 TWh of power each year, although actual output figures have matched around half of that capacity.
The share of renewables in total power output is only one percent although authorities have vowed that production capacity would meet a target of 4500 MW, or nearly 40 TWh a year, by 2021, when a current five-year economic development plan concludes.
Paven’s report said a total of 37 megawatt-size power plants were being constructed across Iran on top of 115 existing ones. It put the number of existing small and medium-sized renewables farms at 3,558, adding that another 2,350 would come on line in a near future.
Last month, Iran’s energy officials said the capacity for electricity production from the renewable sources would increase by five times to reach a target of 4,000 megawatts (MW) in the summer of 2021 when the current administrative government leaves office.
“The Ministry of Energy is determined to bring the output capacity of renewable energy to 4,000 MW by the end of the 12th administration,” Iranian Deputy Energy Minister Homayoun Haeri said.
He noted that the target would mean nearly a five-fold increase from Iran’s current output from renewables, which is 841 MW, or 7.3 terawatt hours (TWh) in energy consumption terms.
Haeri said Iran managed to use 500 MW of electricity generated from renewable sources over the peak months of summer when energy consumptions substantially increase across the country, especially in the arid regions in south and east.
The Iranian deputy energy minister said that the amount of solar energy hitting Iran is estimated to hit 1.3 petawatts (PW), equal to some 150,000 MW of generation capacity and nearly double the current capacity of output from all sources.
He said Iran has already introduced overpricing for renewables to encourage home and industry producers to feed more power to the grid.
In a relevant development, the Iranian government announced earlier that Iran would finalize a major contract for production of solar panels with a foreign company during an energy conference in Tehran.