Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 27
By Seymur Aliyev - Trend:
The importance of alternative and renewable energy sources is increasing amid falling oil prices, which naturally affects the budget of any producing country.
This is equally true for both Azerbaijan and other countries of the Caspian region, the economic backbone of which is the production of hydrocarbons.
The use of renewable energy will allow reducing dependence on hydrocarbons and increase the flexibility of economic policy.
Azerbaijan has great potential for the development of alternative energy.
In particular, the potential of wind energy in the country stands at 4,500 megawatts, biomass (biological material derived from living or recently living organisms) - 1,500 megawatts, geothermal energy - 800 megawatts, and small hydropower plants - 350 megawatts.
According to plans, by 2020 the share of alternative energy sources in total consumption in Azerbaijan should reach 20 percent. It is planned to create hybrid power plants in all the regions of the country in order to reduce losses during the delivery of electricity.
Azerbaijan has already implemented a similar project, during which it built several modular power plants in different regions. However, they run on traditional fuel.
With the development of Azerbaijan's economy, industrialization, increase in the export capacity, and consequent rising consumption, the country's need for electricity will grow as well, and in the future, much of this need can be accounted for with alternative energy sources.
The main problem in the use of alternative energy sources however is a higher cost price. But with the development of science it constantly decreases. From this point of view, research, development and application of new technologies in this field are important for Azerbaijan, which will make it possible not to only use, but also export these technologies in the future. Additionally, domestic production will make it possible to greatly reduce the cost price of equipment and, consequently, production cost price. The issue of training is also very important.
Along with alternative energy sources, Azerbaijan thinks about nuclear power as well. The National Nuclear Research Center has already been established in the country. First of all, it is planned to expand scientific research work in the field of nuclear research in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan needs a research reactor and other related equipment to conduct such studies.
The use of non-traditional, alternative and renewable energy sources is one of the most pressing issues of the 21st century. That's because hydrocarbon resources are exhaustible and have negative impact on the environment, and there are also risk factors connected with nuclear energy.
It remains necessary to develop new alternative energy sources in order to bring these negative factors to naught. Solar power and the creation of effective elements for its conversion into electricity are the most promising of them all.
Seymur Aliyev is the head of Trend Agency's Russian News Service
Edited by CN