According to international experience, the potential of renewable energy sources is assessed in different categories.
• Total (resource) potential is the theoretical amount of energy that can be obtained during full and efficient use of renewable energy sources available in the country without taking into account physical limitations (mountains, valleys, forests, cities, roads, etc.) and the losses in energy transformations.
• Technical potential is the amount of renewable energy that is feasible to obtain at a certain level of technological development as part of the total potential. Thus two main factors are taken into account: the exclusion zone and the loss of transformation.
• Economic potential is the part of the technical potential that can be economically realized. When calculating the economic potential, all costs and socio-economic factors are considered and this potential includes directions that are economically viable for implementation.
• Market potential is the potential of RE which generates more revenue than other renewable energy projects.
Potential of renewable energy sources in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan is one of the countries with a high potential for the renewable energy sources. Thus, the potential of renewable energy sources, which are economically viable and technically feasible, is estimated at 27 000 MW, including 3 000 MW of wind energy, 23 000 MW of solar energy, 380 MW of bioenergy potential, 520 MW of mountain rivers.
The maps designed by the Global Solar Atlas and the Global Wind Atlas, provide information on direct normal radiation, global horizontal radiation, solar radiation and wind energy potential at the Republic of Azerbaijan developed by the initiative of the World Bank to support solar and wind energy.
Energy potential of offshore wind
According to the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) initiated by the World Bank Group, the technical potential of offshore wind energy in the Azerbaijani part of the Caspian Sea is estimated at a total of 157 GW, including 35 GW in shallow water and 122 GW in deep water.
Renewable energy potential of the liberated territories
The analysis shows that the victory of our country in the Second Karabakh War created the conditions for the use of the water resources of the liberated territories for energy purposes. The Tartar River, the Khakari River and its tributaries have great hydropower potential.
Preliminary observations show that there is a favorable potential for solar energy projects in Gubadli, Zangilan, Jabrayil and Fizuli regions, and this technical potential is estimated at more than 7200 MW. Furthermore, according to preliminary studies, the technical potential of wind energy in the mountainous regions of Lachin and Kalbajar is estimated at 2000 MW.
As for other renewable energy sources, there are relevant scientific studies on the availability of geothermal energy sources in Kalbajar and Shusha. The bioenergy potential will be assessed in the future as a result of the development of agriculture and other areas in the liberated territories.