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Middle East?s largest wind farm marks major construction milestone

The 400MW Dumat Al Jandal utility-scale wind farm in Saudi Arabia that is being developed by a consortium led by EDF Renewables in partnership with Masdar, has marked a major construction milestone with the arrival of 20 wind turbines at Duba Port

The turbines comprising towers, blades and nacelles will be assembled at the Dumat Al Jandal site, located 900km north of Riyadh, in the Al Jouf region of Saudi Arabia. A total of 99 Vestas V150-4.2MW wind turbines will be installed, with a hub height of 130 metres and rotor diameter of 150 meters.

Vestas is also responsible for the project?s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract, while TSK is handling the balance of plant (BOP) and Al Babtain Contracting Company is providing the project?s substations and high-voltage solutions.

Dumat Al Jandal will be Saudi Arabia?s first wind farm and the largest in the Middle East when completed. Construction began last August and commercial operations are due to start in the first quarter of 2022.

Once fully operational, the wind farm will power up to 70,000 Saudi households, while displacing around 988,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.

The Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO) of Saudi Arabia?s Ministry of Energy awarded the US$500mn Dumat Al Jandal wind farm to the EDF Renewables-Masdar consortium in January 2019 following a competitive tender in which it had submitted the lowest bid of US$21.3 per megawatt hour (MWh). The tariff was further improved to US$19.9/MWh at financial close, making Dumat Al Jandal the most cost-efficient wind project anywhere in the world.  

The Dumat Al Jandal wind farm will supply electricity according to a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) to the Saudi Power Procurement Company, a subsidiary of the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), the Saudi power generation and distribution company.

Osama bin Abdulwahab Khawandanah, CEO of Saudi Power Procurement Company, which is responsible for purchasing the entire production of the Dumat Al Jandal project, said, ?Dumat Al Jandal is our first wind energy project producing electricity at scale and as a key project under the King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative, it is playing a major role in diversifying Saudi Arabia's power mix sustainably. Dumat Al Jandal reflects our strong partnership with the private sector and the commercial viability of wind energy, which is enabling us to establish a competitive renewable energy sector in the kingdom while reducing our carbon emissions in line with the Vision 2030.?

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO of Masdar, said, ?In addition to being the largest wind farm in the region, and the most cost-efficient of its type, Dumat Al Jandal is committed to achieving a lasting positive community impact through procuring skills and materials in Saudi Arabia, supporting local jobs and businesses, and accelerating knowledge transfer.?