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Comparing the Use of Diesel and Wind Power in Pumping Water in Saudi Arabia

Shafiqur Rehman and Ahmet Z. Sahin

Energy & Environment, 2014, vol. 25, issue 2, 369-388

Abstract: This study compares a diesel only power system with wind only power system for pumping water in some cities of Saudi Arabia. Cost of Energy (COE) is found to be very sensitive with respect to annual mean wind speed. For 10% annual capacity shortage, for example, the COE decreases by 11.5, 21.8, 22.3 and 13.5% at Dhahran, Riyadh, Jeddah, and Guriat, respectively for an increase in annual mean wind speed of only 0.4m/s. On the other hand, COE for zero capacity shortage is found to be 0.224, 0.455, 0.294, 0.334, and 1.379$/kWh at Dhahran, Riyadh, Jeddah, Guriat, and Nejran, respectively. The cost of pumping water from a well of 50 m total dynamic head (TDH) is studied for both the wind energy and diesel only systems. Cost of water when using wind energy system is found to be 5.35, 10.4, 6.94, 7.71, and 30.56US¢/m 3 for Dhahran, Riyadh, Jeddah, Guriat and Nejran, respectively. Cost of water when using diesel only system is found to vary from 7 to 16.5US¢/m 3 depending on the fuel price. Furthermore, the wind based system becomes more cost effective when the diesel fuel cost is more than 0.4$/L for all sites except for Nejran. Last but not the least, the utilization of wind power for water pumping in Saudi Arabia will result into avoidance of addition of around 24,000 tons of CO 2 equivalent greenhouse gases from entering into the local atmosphere annually.

Keywords: Wind; water pumping; wind speed; economics; diesel; Saudi Arabia (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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Handle: RePEc:sae:engenv:v:25:y:2014:i:2:p:369-388