MA’ADEN, GlassPoint sign pact to develop world’s largest solarized steam plant

Highlights :

  • The upcoming solar thermal plant called ‘Solar 1’ will be located in Ras al Khairto harness the power of the sun to produce steam that will further be used to refine bauxite ore into alumina.
  • The 1,500 MW solar steam facility will help MA’ADEN achieve sustainability goals by reducing carbon emissions by over 600,000 tons annually.

Saudi Arabian Mining Company or MA’ADEN which is the country’s national mining champion has signed a MoU with the US based GlassPoint to develop the world’s largest solar process heat plant at MA’ADEN Alumina refinery. GlassPoint claims to be a leader in industrial solar steam.

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The official statement of the companies holds that when complete, the 1,500 MW solar steam facility will help MA’ADEN achieve sustainability goals by reducing carbon emissions by over 600,000 tons annually. This represents more than 50% reduction of carbon footprint in MA’ADEN Alumina refinery and 4% of overall carbon footprint of MA’ADEN.

The pact was signed in Riyadh by Riyadh Al Nassar, senior vice president of MA’ADEN aluminum business and Rod MacGregor, CEO and founder of GlassPoint.

MA’ADEN CEO Robert Wilts said, “As the third pillar of the Saudi economy, we aspire to be a role model in ESG in the Kingdom. This significant development will dramatically reduce our carbon footprint and bring us closer to our mandate of carbon neutrality by 2050. As the world moves towards green aluminum, MA’ADEN intends to help lead the way in this transition.”

Riyadh Al Nassar stated, “The proposed new facility, a solar thermal plant known as MA’ADEN Solar 1, will be located in Ras al Khair, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and will harness the power of the sun to produce steam. The steam will be used to refine bauxite ore into alumina. Alumina is a critical feedstock to Aluminum, which is one of the world’s most crucial metals for many global industries going into a future that is focused on environment and sustainability.”

Rod MacGregor, CEO and founder of GlassPoint, mentioned, “This facility when built will be the largest industrial solar steam plant in the world and the first deployed in both Saudi Arabia and in the aluminum supply chain. With this MOU, GlassPoint is entering a new phase of growth to help decarbonize a range of industries seeking to lower their carbon footprint.”

The pact of MA’ADEN and GlassPoint is in line with the Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) that advances the fight of the country against climate change and help Saudi Arabia to become an international leader in sustainability. In 2021, the SGI unveiled a first wave of more than 60 initiatives, amounting to a $186 billion investment to accelerate the green economy in Saudi Arabia and beyond.

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