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Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power to build 1.5 GW wind plant in Uzbekistan

The wind farm is projected to have an investment value of $2.4 billion

Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power to build 1.5 GW wind plant in Uzbekistan
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

The growth of clean energy is accelerating in Uzbekistan. To build the 1.5 GW Kungrad wind farm in Karakalpakstan—previously known as the Karakalpakstan Wind IPP—ACWA Power and Uzbekistan have signed power purchase agreements and investment agreements.

The wind farm will consist of three 500 MW wind power projects controlled by three subsidiaries: ACWA Power Kungrad Winds 1, 2, and 3.

Additionally, a 100 MW battery energy storage system will be incorporated into the three projects. The wind farm is projected to have an investment value of $2.4 billion and is currently thought to be the largest single-site wind farm in Central Asia and one of its kind worldwide.

The groundwork for the power purchase agreements and investment agreements for the plant was already laid by a Heads of Terms agreement between ACWA Power and the Uzbek ministries of energy and investment & foreign trade inked in august.

Due to the utilization of mitigation technologies, such as bird-detecting equipment to minimize bird collision or fatality, the wind farm is anticipated to offset 2.4 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually with the least possible environmental impact.

The Kungrad wind farm will support the long-term Uzbek government policy to diversify the country’s energy mix, which aims to add 8 GW and 12 GW of solar and wind capacity by 2026 and 2030, respectively.

“The development of green energy and market reform go hand in hand in Uzbekistan, and the Kungrad project is a milestone both for our wind industry and the new public-private partnership model, introduced by the far-sighted reforms of President Mirziyoyev. The wind farm in Karakalpakstan, which will be built by our reliable partner ACWA Power, will be another pillar of a sustainable and reliable energy system in Uzbekistan,” said Jurabek Mirzamakhmudov, Minister of Energy of Uzbekistan.

The project will be fully operational in 2027 after achieving a financial close by 2024. When finished, the project will supply energy to 1.65 million homes.

“The signing of key agreements today for the landmark Kungrad wind farm project, which will set a new benchmark for sustainable energy development in the region, and the world, would have not been possible without the guidance of our visionary leadership and the trust and commitment of our partners from the Uzbek government,” said Mohammad Abunayyan, Chairman, ACWA Power.

Furthermore, as part of the collaboration agreement that ACWA Power and the Uzbek government inked in August, ACWA Power formalized agreements to construct sizable green hydrogen plants in Uzbekistan. These initiatives will lessen Uzbekistan’s reliance on natural gas, advance the nation’s decarbonization ambitions, and promote green hydrogen research.

The 1.5 GW Kungrad wind project is the fifth project for ACWA Power in Uzbekistan. Three wind farms and a combined cycle gas turbine plant are also part of the company’s portfolio in Uzbekistan. According to total investment, Uzbekistan ranks second for ACWA Power.

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