Electricity charges at three fils per kilowatt for nationals against a production cost of 29 fils per kilowatt at a whopping subsidy of almost 90 per cent makes it one of the cheapest utilities supply in the world.
The proposal to have a further cut on the electricity tariff to two fils per kilowatt has been shelved by the Shura Council. After 18 months expatriates and commercial consumers will be paying 29 fil per kilowatt, meaning no additional financial burden to the government (EWA or Noga) and BD290 million saving for the government over the four years by gradually removing the subsidy for expatriates and commercial consumers.
Here Noga has to be lauded for their initiative for the pilot project to solar power Housing Ministry houses with seven kWp solar packages. The basic idea behind this is to cut down on natural gas consumption as it is expected to have another 10,000 houses to be solar powered in the next two years – a huge saving on gas consumption.
By 2025, 5pc of total power generated in the kingdom has to be from solar power, a bold directive.
Bahrain and the other Middle East countries are blessed with plenty of sunlight and so tapping into this unlimited energy source is very simple. At present the only limiting factor is the availability of free land for the installation of panels. The rule of thumb is that the area required for every kilowatt is seven m2. At present there aren’t many free areas for the same and so vast areas of land are being cleared for a proposed 100 MW solar plant.
So without any doubt, solar power, the most clean source of energy, is going to be the solution to go forward.