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Electricity in Saudi Arabia in 2022

Global Ranking: #179
0.2% #192 Low-carbon electricity
43.58 % #58 Electrification
1275.19 watts #15 Generation / person
543.05 gCO2eq/kWh #156 Carbon Intensity

Saudi Arabia's electricity consumption in 2022 was overwhelmingly dominated by fossil fuels, with nearly all (99.79%) of its electricity generated from these sources. The majority (67.08%) of this fossil-generated electricity came from natural gas. This reliance on fossil fuels comes with significant consequences, including contributing to climate change and air pollution. Low-carbon electricity, such as that generated from nuclear, wind, and solar sources, comprised close to none of the total electricity production, marking a critical area for future development and investment in clean energy technologies.

Suggestions

To increase low-carbon electricity generation, Saudi Arabia might look to countries with successful strategies in place. Nuclear energy could play a significant role, as evidenced by France, where 65% of their electricity comes from nuclear power, and Slovakia, where the figure stands at 62%. Considering the environmental and historical similarities, Saudi Arabia could also study the United Arab Emirates and Jordan, which have implemented nuclear and solar technologies successfully. Wind energy is another avenue, with Denmark generating more than half of its electricity from wind, and Ireland producing almost a third from this source. Learning from these countries, Saudi Arabia could prioritize the rapid development of nuclear, wind, and solar energy projects to diversify its energy mix and reduce carbon emissions.

History

Historically, Saudi Arabia has made minimal progress in adopting low-carbon electricity sources. From 2008 to 2017, the country had no noticeable generation from solar or wind. By 2018, solar energy made a minor appearance, generating 0.1 TWh of electricity, with wind still contributing nothing. This trend continued modestly in 2019, with solar again generating 0.1 TWh, and unchanged wind generation. A notable increase came in 2021, where solar generated 0.6 TWh, but wind still made no headway. By 2022, despite the lack of progress in wind energy, the trend in solar marked a beginning towards a cleaner energy future. This history underscores the importance of accelerating the development of low-carbon technologies to meet the energy needs sustainably.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Data Sources

For the years 1980 to 1984 the data source is EIA.
For the years 1985 to 1999 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the years 2000 to 2007 the data source is Ember.
For the years 2008 to 2010 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the years 2011 to 2016 the data source is Ember.
For the years 2017 to 2018 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the years 2019 to 2022 the data source is Ember.
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