Jordan aid plans hit procedure gaffe

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Plans for three 25 MW wind stations in Jordan have reached an uncertain future due to a "hiccup" in foreign aid procedures. Two of the projects are the focus of a feasibility study for which aid has been granted by the German aid agency for technical co-operation, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ), under its Terna program. Terna covers wind feasibility studies and consultation, including support in drawing up tender documents (Windpower Monthly, January 1998).

Independently of GTZ, however, the Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources issued a request for proposals (RFP) for the projects, to be sited at Aqaba, Shawbak and Hufa (Windpower Monthly, January 2001). The tenders elicited no response because they were not detailed enough. Normally GTZ support on tenders avoids such problems. Another tender may be issued, says GTZ.

The feasibility study for Aqaba has also been set back due to difficulties with wind measurements, says Andreas Dubois of Deutsche Energie Consult Ingenieurgesellschaft (Decon), the German firm in charge of the studies. Existing wind speed data for the Aqaba region has been supplied by different Jordanian institutions, some of which have directed data collected on site to a weather station in Israel, which returns the processed data to Jordan in an unusable format, Dubois says. The resulting communication between the two countries over the data mix-up might end up in Israeli participation, however. Israel Electric has signalled its interest in a stake in the Aqaba project should it go ahead.

CO2 Bonus

For the Aqaba wind station, Decon is recommending that Jordan grant a CO2 bonus subsidy for generation. The project is planned for 32, 600 kW turbines at a cost of $19.6 million. To make economic sense, says Dubois, a payment of DEM 0.126/kWh would be required. Decon proposes a CO2 bonus subsidy of $17 per tonne of CO2 saved, which translates to a generation price of JOD 28.5/MWh, or DEM 0.082/kWh -- in the mid-range of current electricity prices in Jordan. A CO2 bonus is one proposal of the feasibility study that aims to earmark potential for cutting CO2 emissions in line with Jordan's Kyoto commitments and reducing Jordan's dependence on imported oil, which is mainly from Iraq.

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