Sultanate of Oman Is Going Green

National Economy

The population of the Sultanate of Oman is approximately 5.21 million people[1]. In 2019, 100% of the people in this Middle Eastern country had access to electricity[2].

In 2019, Oman’s economy was ranked 69th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP)[3]. The country’s economy is dependent on the export[4] of crude oil, liquified natural gas, refined petroleum, iron, fertilizer, gems, and precious metals.

Environment Policies

In 2016, Oman signed the Paris Climate Agreement[5], committing to an unconditional 2% cut in greenhouse gas emissions, relative to business as usual.

In 2017, Oman announced a national renewable energy target[6] to source 10% of the nation’s total electricity generation from renewable energy by 2025.

In 2018, Oman’s electric utilities used natural gas (87.7%) and petroleum (12.3%) to generate electricity[7] in the country.

Recent renewable energy projects in Oman include:

  • 3,500 MW Solar Project + Hydrogen Hub – In November 2020, the Port of Sohar announced plans to develop a large scale green hydrogen generation hub powered by solar energy.
  • 125 MW Solar Project – In June 2020, Indian solar company, Sterling and Wilson Solar commissioned the Amin Solar project, which is located in the southwestern region of the country.
  • 25 MW Solar Project – In January 2021, Sterling and Wilson Solar commissioned a solar project in the Port of Sohar, which is approximately 125 miles northwest of the nation’s capital, Muscat.

Conclusions

Commercial oil was first discovered in Oman in 1964[8] and is still a dominant component of the country’s economy. In 2020, Oman was the 15th largest oil and 10th largest liquified natural gas exporting country in the world[9].

Why is the Oman developing renewable energy projects? Economics pure and simple. The country recognizes that fossil fuels like oil and natural gas are not renewable and the nation’s hydrocarbons will eventually be depleted. The government’s goal is to use renewable energy for domestic power, while preserving oil and natural gas for foreign export.

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”

www.jackkerfoot.com

 

[1] Sultanate of Oman (2021) –  April 11, 2021 www.worldmeters.info

[2] Sultanate of Oman – The World Bank Group

[3] Gross Domestic Product 2019 – World Bank DataBank

[4] OEC – Sultanate of Oman

[5] Carbon Brief “Paris 2015: Tracking Country Climate Pledges”

[6] The Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, “Challenges In Maximizing Renewables In Oman’s Energy Mix”

[7] International Energy Agency (IEA) – Oman

[8] Oman – Economy, Britannica

[9] The World Fact Book

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