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World bank oks half-billion dollars to fund morocco solar

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  • World bank oks half-billion dollars to fund morocco solar

    Oct. 1 (Bloomberg) — The World Bank will provide a half-billion dollars to help fund two solar-thermal power projects in Morocco that are among the world’s largest.

    The bank will partly finance the 350-megawatt Noor II and III plants near Ouarzazate in southern Morocco, it said in a statement. Of this, $400 million will come from the bank and $119 million from the Clean Technology Fund it administers.

    The facilities are part of Morocco’s solar power plan that’s targeting the installation of 2,000 megawatts of capacity by 2020. Solar-thermal power, also known as concentrated solar, involves mirrors that focus sunlight to make steam and power turbines.

    The two projects follow an initial 160-megawatt solar plant at the site, Africa’s largest, awarded in September 2012 and now under construction. The three have funding support from the World Bank and organizations such as the African Development Bank, European Investment Bank, Agence Francaise de Developpement, KfW and the European Commission.

    Three groups were shortlisted last year for the 200-megawatt plant using parabolic trough technology and four for the 100-megawatt solar power tower project.

    The three-plant solar complex will supply electricity to 1.1 million Moroccans by 2018, according to World Bank.