The Desertec Initiative, a coalition of energy and technology companies, has been joined by a further 14 companies as associated partners.

The following companies have joined the initiative:

  • 3M Deutschland (Germany)
  • Bilfinger Berger (Germany)
  • Commerzbank (Germany)
  • Evonik Industries (Germany)
  • Flabeg (US)
  • IBM Deutschland (Germany)
  • Italgen (Italy)
  • Kaefer Isoliertechnik (Germany)
  • Lahmeyer International (Germany)
  • Morgan Stanley (US)
  • Nur Energie (UK)
  • OMV (Austria)
  • Schoeller Renewables (Germany)
  • Terna Energy (Greece)

The US’ First Solar also recently joined the scheme as an associated partner.

Unlike the 13 companies that founded the initiative in 2009, the associated partners are not shareholders in the project, but rather participants who will offer technical expertise for the scheme.

Desertec has said the expansion of its shareholder base represents an important step towards creating a pan-regional alliance, as most of the founding partners are of German origin. By adding some companies from other countries to the group, it hopes to increase government support from this region.

The initiative was launched in 2009 with the intention of bringing together companies with experience in power generation, to build a series of concentrated solar power, photovoltaic and wind projects in the Middle East and North Africa.

The Desertec scheme intends to supply power to the local market for each plant, but will also export a large portion of the power to Europe. Desertec has set a target of providing 15 per cent of Europe’s power demand by 2050 through its renewable energy projects.