Commercial-scale hybrid solar photovoltaic-diesel systems in select Arab countries with weak grids: an integrated appraisal

Hassan Harajli, Vahakn Kabakian, Jad El Baba, Ahmad Diab, Carla Nassab

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Solar photovoltaic (PV) diesel hybrid systems are effective solutions for sustainable energy transition in countries where utility grids are intermittent. An ‘integrated appraisal’ of 'hybrid solar (PV) - diesel' systems are carried out to assess their overall energetic, environmental, financial and economic performances. The study carries out the analysis of hybridized solar photovoltaic energy using first-hand data and information collected from the Palestinian, Lebanese and Iraqi commercial and/or industrial sectors, adopting several scenarios of tariff and diesel fuel prices, capital costs assumptions, solar PV curtailment, and values for environmental damage adopted from life-cycle impact assessment methods that allow for monetization and are globally valid. Results show that hybrid PV-diesel systems have largely beneficial energy, environmental and economic performances in all three countries, whereas their financial performance are also positive for Palestine and Lebanon, however less promising in Iraq, mainly due Iraq's heavily subsidized electricity tariff. The study concludes with policy recommendations focused on promoting solar PV in the commercial and/or industrial sectors, namely: the gradual phasing-out of fossil fuel subsidies, the effective execution of net-metering, the provision of subsidized sustainable energy loans, and carefully designed energy management systems.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111190
Number of pages18
JournalEnergy Policy
Early online date26 Dec 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2020


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