Massive Sahara solar project could power the EU
TuNur, a private company incorporated in the United Kingdom, filed for authorization with the Tunisian Ministry of Energy, Mines and Renewable Energy for a 4.5-gigawatt solar export project.
The solar farm is one of the most ambitious solar plant developments and is projected for construction in the Sahara Desert in Southwest Tunisia near Rjim Maâtoug.
Three HVDC submarine cable systems are under development, which will allow the transport of power to Europe with low losses. The first cable links Tunisia and Malta, as Malta is already connected to the European grid. The second cable will link Tunisia to central Italy, with a shoring point north of Rome. A third cable is under study and will link Tunisia directly to the south of France.
The solar power delivered would be sufficient to power more than five million European homes or fuel more than seven million electric vehicles.
The solar project is part of the solution to Europe’s increasingly imperative challenges in the energy sector, including meeting the Paris Climate Agreement emissions reduction targets; replacing obsolete fossil fuel and nuclear power plants; reducing reliance on imported fossil fuels; and meeting the expected surge in electricity demand from electric vehicles. Currently, Europe imports more than half of its energy in the form of fossil fuels.