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Morocco will dedicate about 2.5 million acres of land to new cutting-edge energy projects — here's how

The North African country boasts the world's largest concentrated solar power plant.

The North African country boasts the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant.

Photo Credit: iStock

Morocco is set to embrace green hydrogen in a big way, allocating about 2.5 million acres (1 million hectares) of land to new projects to deliver the clean power source.

Green hydrogen, produced when electrolysis converts water into hydrogen and oxygen, has the potential to power trucks, ships, or planes. The only byproduct is water, which is much better than planet-warming gases like carbon dioxide and methane produced by burning dirty energy.

It could revolutionize the energy sector, but the process is energy-intensive, which makes gains minimal when compared to the power used to create it.

But Morocco presents a huge opportunity to develop green hydrogen. Abundant sunlight allows for substantial energy yields from solar power, and clean energy can be used to create green hydrogen that can be utilized in some of the world's most polluting machines.

Indeed, the North African country boasts the world's largest concentrated solar power plant. The Ouarzazate Solar Power Station covers an area of about 7,400 acres (3,000 hectares) and produces around 580 megawatts of power, according to CNN.

The first phase of green hydrogen production will consist of about 740,000 acres (300,000 hectares), as Reuters detailed. The Moroccan government will offer incentives for investors who want to get involved in generating the fuel, both for domestic use and export. 

The prime minister's office said the country's green hydrogen ambition will "play a major role in the field of energy transition globally."

Morocco already produces a significant portion of its energy from renewable sources, with 37.6% of the country's supply coming from solar, wind, and other clean technologies, per Reuters. According to the ESFC Investment Group, before the construction of the Ouarzazate facility, the country was generating 95% of its electricity from imported dirty energy

However, to achieve a goal of having renewables account for 52% of all installed capacity by 2030, per Reuters, further ambitious plans are required, and green hydrogen could help accelerate efforts to meet that target. 

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