Assessment the extent to which solar energy is a viable alternative energy for oil in Saudi Arabia

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The diversification in terms of sustainable energy and the utilization renewable energy options in various practical uses have become one of the most significant factors as a substitutable source for oil and gas. In addition, it could be a viable solution for environmental problems. Omubo-Pepple et al. (2009) believe that the effective solution for environmental degradation, resulted from the use of fossil fuels which caused some dangerous problems such as acid rain, green house effect and ozone layer depletion, is to increase in renewable energy options uses. Indeed, some countries such as United States, Germany, Spain and Japan are progressively undergoing transition from hydrocarbon-based economy to one based on sustainable forms energy. Although Saudi Arabia has one-fourth of the world oil reserves, it has a massive quantity of solar radiation. Therefore, the government encouraged researchers by launching an energy research institute (ERI) at the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology. During two decades, the ERI has several of international participations such as SOLERAS with the U.S. institute and HYSOLAR with the Federal Republic of Germany and some major research such as development and demonstration (Alawaji, 2001). Even though Saudi Arabia is a leading oil producer, it is widely believed that solar energy is a viable energy source that should be exploited for the benefit of the country. This essay will discuss the conditions that facilitate the use of solar energy in Saudi Arabia such as the geographic location and the amount of sunshine, and the obstacles that hinder it such as availability of oil, the effect of dust and non-availability subsidies. The first condition is the strategy geographic location of Sau... ... middle of paper ... ...and industrialized nations that could run on the same pace and take an active part in the development of new technologies. References ALAWAJI, S. H. (2001) 'Evaluation of Solar Energy Research and its Applications in Saudi Arabia- 20 Years of Experience'. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 5(2001) pp. 59-77. Al-SALAH, Y. (2008) 'Renewable Energy Scenarios for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia'. p.1. Energy Information Administration (EIA) (2009) ' Country Information on Saudi Arabia' p.2 RAMACHANDRA, T. V. (2007) 'Solar energy potential assessment using GIS'. p.106. MOHANDES, M., et al. (1999) 'Use radial basis functions for estimating monthly mean daily solar radiation'. p.161. OMUBO-Pepple, V. B., et al. (2009) 'Effects of Temperature, Solar Flux and Relative Humidity on the Efficient Conversion of Solar Energy to Electricity' No.2, pp.173-180.

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