As a result of one of the worst energy crises in decades, the population of Egypt has suffered regular power outages, causing major disruption to people, industry and public services. The Egyptian government pledged to significantly increase the country’s power generation capacity to help meet demand.
Increasing capacity to meet demand
Ramboll is acting as Independent Environmental and Social Consultant (IESC) on behalf of the coordinated initial mandated lead arrangers, export credit agencies and lenders during the construction and operation phases of three new 4.8GW combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power plants in Beni Suef, Burullus and New Capital, Egypt. Using CCGT technology increases energy efficiency by operating a gas turbine and burning natural gas, with a hot exhaust that powers a steam power turbine.
Making a difference
When fully operational, the power plants will boost Egypt’s power generation capacity by over 40 percent.
As part of the project, more than 600 local engineers and technicians were trained by Siemens to give them the required skills to continue the operation and maintenance of the plants. The workforce on-site was provided with environmental, social, health and safety training. A total of 24,000 workers were at the three sites during construction peak times.
By ensuring compliance with Egyptian and international standards to help secure the required financing, our oversight of the project has helped to give Egypt a modern sustainable energy infrastructure, whilst supporting its people to gain the skills to operate the plants.
Siemens is acting as the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor and consortium lead on behalf of the Egyptian Electricity Holding Company (EEHC) with support from local partners Orascom and El Sewedy Electric conducting the civil works. The consortium partners have completed the supply, installation and commissioning of the plants.
Ramboll's international team includes Impact Assessment experts from around Europe. Key practitioners include Andrea Merkle (Principal, Germany) and Verena Rödl (Senior Consultant, Germany).
Ramboll performed gap analyses of the local environmental and social impact assessments (ESIAs), established environmental and social action plans (ESAPs) and conducted regular monitoring visits during construction which will continue for over 10 years during operation.
The main objective was to review compliance with International Finance Corporation (IFC) performance standards and the Equator Principles.
The project began in 2015 with the gap analyses of the ESIAs and related ESMPs. At this stage Ramboll began to review and comment on all documents and deliverables under the ESAPs and provided monthly ESAP updates.
Construction and commissioning phase
The next phase saw Ramboll’s Environment & Health team undertake further reviews and ESAP updates, meetings with all parties and regular update calls during the construction and commissioning of the plants. Regular monitoring visits were completed during this phase between 2016-2018, during which we also focussed on health and safety.
The power plants began commercial combined cycle operation in early 2019, and Ramboll performed the first operation monitoring visit soon after. We will remain contracted to the project for the repayment period of the loan until 2030. During this time, we will conduct monitoring visits and continue to review deliverables that must be provided on a regular basis.
An award-winning project
The Mega project has received a number of awards, most notably Beni Suef was voted Best Overall ECA Finance Deal of the Year at the TXF Global Export and Agency Finance awards in 2015.
The project will increase Egypt’s power production by over 40%.
Operating the plants in a combined cycle mode leads to an operating efficiency of over 60% saving natural gas resources.
Higher electricity supply allows for greater overall economic development and population growth
All workers at the three sites were provided with environmental, social and health and safety training
The advanced technology will result in reduced levels of air quality contaminants and reduced greenhouse gases.