Electricity consumption per person in Saudi Arabia drops 20 pct, lowest since 1993

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The consumption of electricity per person in Saudi Arabia dropped to its lowest level since 1993 last year, as the Kingdom continues to move towards energy efficiency, according to data published by the Electricity & Co-Generation Regulatory Authority.

Saudi Arabia had in 2018 lifted subsidies on electricity and gasoline in an effort to promote more efficient consumption – which tends to spike in the summer when the temperature in the country often rises to above 50 degrees Celsius.

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“Since reforms were put in place, we have noticed a growing public interest in energy efficiency, and a clear change in behavior,” former energy minister Khalid al-Falih had said at the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week in early 2019.

According to ECRA, energy consumption per customer in Saudi Arabia measured at 36.9 kilowatts in 2014. By 2019, that level had decreased to 29.5 kilowatts.

The Kingdom has developed several plans for energy efficiency, which includes an investment by its sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), in ACWA Power for the development of renewable energy.

It also plans to generate 9.5 gigawatts (GW) of electricity from renewable sources a year by 2023 through 60 projects, involving an investment that is estimated to be between $30 billion and $50 billion.

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