DESERTEC project: energy from the desert.
Desertec is a global renewable energy solution based on harnessing sustainable power from the sites where renewable sources of energy are at their most abundant.
The Desertec concept was originally developed by the Trans-Mediterranean Renewable Energy Corporation (TREC), today known as the Desertec foundation. In this project many renewable energies are used but mainly are solar energies.
Desertec, which includes 21 companies and 36 partners, including France, Germany or Italy, aims to enhance capacity of energies in Africa thanks to solar and wind, answers to regional demand for electricity and exports some energies in Europe.
This project is based on the fact that each km² of desert receives annually “solar energy equivalent to 1.5 million barrels of oil”. The total area of deserts on the planet provides hundred of time the energy used in the world today. Covering 0.3% of the 40 million km² of desert on the planet in solar thermal power plants would cover the electricity needs of the planet.
Many organizations are supporting the implementation of the Desertec concept like Desertec Foundation, RWE (electricity), Deutsche Bank, Sonelgaz (National Company of Electricity and Gas in Algeria) etc… Siemens will leave the project ending 2012. Bosch will also leave the Desertec project in Morocco. The Moroccan project is suffering from the political situation, including the Arab Spring.
Despite the departure of some organizations, the Desertec project seems to export to Japan. After the Fukushima disaster, Japan confirmed at the end of October that it will work with the Desertec foundation. Renewable energy resources in backcountry of Asia, such as the Gobi desert, are very abundant.