UAE launches drive for tapping renewable sources of energy

United Arab Emirates has mounted a major drive for exploring renewable and sustainable sources of energy by tapping solar and wind potential in a bid to lessen its  dependence on oil in years ahead. Dr Nawal Al Husani Director of sustainable and clean energy along with Director Masdar Clean City energy Bader Al Lamki briefing  journalists from different countries ,here to attend the 41th national day celebrations, said that Masdar City Initiative had been launched to realize these goals in line with vision of  UAE’s founding father Shaikh Zahid bin Sultan Al Nahayan who wanted to ensure a sustained economic growth for securing the future of coming generations.She said Masdar City had emerged one of the world’s first low-carbon urban developments which was  powered by renewable energy and a test- bed for cutting edge clean energy and efficiency technologies.

The City’s engagement with local and international suppliers , she said had  resulted in the city helping develop and bring  to local  markets a range of green building materials, including low-carbon cement, high recycled content aluminum, sustainably sourced timber and 100 per cent recycled steel reinforcing bars.

Director Masdar Clean City energy Bader Al Lamki  said the initiative had accomplished a lot in last two years and UAE  was helping Britain in the field of renewable energy. One of our big project  with 630 Mega watts capacity in Britain was at the last stage of  completion while another is being built at the coast of  Essex to utilize wind resources for producing power.

Masdar City’s experts, he said were looking to make investment in renewable energy not in Europe alone but also working on different projects  in the Middle East, said Al Lakmi.

Dr Nawal said the Masdar Institute’s residential buildings  were designed to use 54 per cent less potable water and 51 per cent less electricity than businesses as usual. She said 30 per cent of these buildings demand was being met by rooftop PV and 75 per cent hot water was provided by rooftop thermal collectors.

During  a visit to Masdar  one of the experts at Masdar City Initiative Simon Braeuniger told journalists that chilled water is being used to cool at least 1700 sq metres of office space in the city.

He said the solar panels installed at  Masdar City  at the moment were producing 10 MW of electricity but the capacity could be enhanced by installing more  panels.

Answering a question Dr. Nawal said women were accorded a special place in  development of  the country and even at Masdar City Institute of Science and Technology 30 per students were women.

She quoted the founder of the country , Sheikh Zahid bin Sultan Al Nahyan as having said “Nothing could delight me more than to see the woman taking up her distinctive position in society, Nothing should hinder her progress”.

At present the UAE has four women cabinet ministers while nine out of 40 members of parliament are women besides they  are represented in all government departments.

Referring to forge international cooperation for tackling the world’s major challenges  in sustainability and renewable energy, Dr.  Nawal said Masdar was hosting ‘Abu Dhabi Sustainability week’ in January next year. It will bring together the World Future Energy Summit, the International Renewable Energy Conference, IRENA’s2 2nd General Assembly and the Zayed Future Energy Prize Award ceremony.  The  Zayed Future Energy Prize was established in 2008 for promoting clean environment in the world.

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