Benban Solar Park - State Information Service
CAIRO - 14 February 2022: KarmSolar, one of Egypt’s largest private solar energy companies, has become the first private company to receive a permit to distribute electricity in Marsa Alam by EgyptERA. Subsequent to the permit award, KarmSolar launched the Marsa Alam Solar Grid, a first-of-its-kind regional energy solution that aims to power resorts across Marsa Alam.
In Phase 1 of the Marsa Alam Solar Grid, KarmSolar has received a permit to distribute to North Marsa Alam resorts: Marsa Shagra Resort, The Oasis, Wadi Sabbara, Equinox 3 Corners, and Solidaire Resorts. KarmSolar has already applied for the Phase 2 permit from EgyptERA which will add the Marriott Ayoun Misr, which is currently under development, to the North Marsa Alam Solar Grid. Phase 3 of the project will establish the South Marsa Alam Solar Grid including resorts Azure Wadi Lahmy, and Lahami Bay Resort among other locations.
The 8 initial resorts have already signed agreements with KarmSolar to join the Marsa Alam Solar Grid. KarmSolar will cover the costs of grid connection as well as construct a dedicated PV solar energy plant at each resort to replace existing diesel generators currently powering resorts of the region. Diesel generators are unreliable electricity sources that are costly to operate and maintain, and cause significant air pollution through greenhouse gas emissions.
The cost of grid connection amounts to 5-9 Million EGP per resort (depending on the distance from the national grid connection point) and will be completely covered by KarmSolar. Participating resorts will be paying KarmSolar electricity bills that are 50-60% less than their previous energy expenses, and receive their energy from their dedicated solar station as well as the national grid.
Connecting to the national grid and utilizing solar energy will provide participating resorts with much more economical, reliable, and environmental electricity without the high upfront investment, empowering the resorts to maintain more sustainable and cost-effective operations.
“The Marsa Alam Solar Grid provides a valuable opportunity to previously off-grid resorts in the area to enjoy the benefits of solar energy and grid-connection without having to invest millions upfront. We’re looking forward to expanding the project in Marsa Alam, and we are already exploring new Solar Grid opportunities around Egypt,” said Ahmed Zahran, co-founder and CEO at KarmSolar. “Marsa Alam is a thriving sea-side region, and one of the most renowned scuba-diving destinations around the world. We're proud to be among the organizations investing in the infrastructure of this unique corner of Egypt. KarmSolar will continue its mission to offer sustainable, fully integrated solar energy and water desalination solutions, with the objective of powering and sustainably empowering communities across Egypt.”
"One of my dreams for Marsa Shagra was to stop using diesel generators because they are horrible for the environment. I dreamt of using a renewable energy source that is sustainable and accessible,” said Hossam Helmy, Founder of Red Sea Diving Safari (Marsa Shagra Resort). “The Marsa Alam Solar Grid project also is very economical, especially considering the national grid connection. We are grateful to the state for extending the national grid to Marsa Alam. Grid-power costs us half of what electricity from diesel generators used to us, and coupled with solar energy from KarmSolar, our energy setup is cost-effective and optimized."