Qatar to welcome smart Kahramaa meters by 2020 end
During the opening ceremony of the ‘2nd Conference on Smart Grid and Renewable Energy (SGRE2019)’, it was announced that all meters in Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation’s (Kahramaa) grid will be converted to smart meters by the end of next year. This was held in Doha and announced on Tuesday.
According to Kahramaa president Essa bin Hilal al-Kuwari, “Kahramaa’s smart efforts also include water sustainability and quality, which encourages innovation and new technologies, especially to decrease water losses and advanced desalination techniques.” Al-Kuwari is also the chairman of the Smart Grid Centre at Texas A&M at Qatar. As the honorary chair of the conference, he discussed that the engagement with customers has greatly improved with the Advanced Metering Infrastructure project. Under this initiative, more than 320,000 smart meters have already been installed in its grid, all of which are connected with multiple smart technologies as well as fiber optics.
“Like any smart utility, Kahramaa faces challenges while upgrading its network. This includes continuous need for investment, technology choice and upgrade, and cyber security issues. However, our grid is highly-capable of monitoring and controlling all its assets and operations together with its networks of smart meters, renewable energy, and electric vehicles, while optimising Kahramaa’s business and engaging its customers,” he continued. “A successful example of Kahramaa’s grid upgrade is a condition monitoring project of all substations, which achieved net savings of $36mn and reduced faults by more than 50%. Customers’ engagement has also improved with the Advanced Metering Infrastructure project.”
The vision of this smart grid project is to create a sustainable and digitally-enabled grid that is secure, reliable, and high-quality. “Qatar is currently preparing the first ‘carbon neutral’ World Cup in 2022. To further help in reducing emissions and diversifying energy sources, Qatar has set goals to increase the share of renewable energy. In this regard, Kahramaa will install the first mega photovoltaic station in Qatar with a capacity of 700MW in 2022,” he said. “Kahramaa is currently working to finalise Qatar’s renewable energy strategy by the end of 2020. Moreover, Kahramaa is currently installing a network of electric vehicle charging stations. This includes installing the first photovoltaic energy storage EV charging station, as well as the first e-buses charging units in Qatar.”
The State is also fervently committed to the Paris Agreement Goals that aim to combat climate change as well as to mitigate the effects of green-house emission. “Furthermore, policy and specifications are in final revisions with the support of the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC). In addition, Kahramaa has launched the National Programme for Conservation & Energy Efficiency ‘Tarsheed’, which was able to reduce carbon emissions by almost 4mn tonnes and achieve financial savings of almost $0.5bn in 2018 through technical, legal, and awareness initiatives. This economic and digital growth increases energy demand and the need for an efficient energy infrastructure. Smart, innovative grids are key to the energy transformation required to meet Qatar’s climate and energy responsibilities.”
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