During a Panel Discussion titled ‘How Clean Tech is shaping the Future of Energy’ During the World Government Summit
HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) noted that Dubai provides the perfect environment for the private sector to actively contribute to renewable energy projects and achieve success. Al Tayer made the statement during a plenary session on the first day of the World Government Summit. Joe Kaeser, President and CEO of Siemens AG, shared the session with Al Tayer. The session titled ‘How Clean Tech is shaping the Future of Energy’ was moderated by John Defterios, CNN’s Emerging Markets Editor. The session saw a wide attendance from the World Government Summit participants and the media.
Al Tayer noted that discussing renewable energy at this year’s World Government Summit, underlines the importance the UAE is attaching to renewable and clean energy. President and CEO of Siemens AG hailed the UAE’s efforts and its futuristic vision in energy sector.
“At Dewa, we have an integrated vision in energy sector that focuses on energy security through diversifying its resources, the latest technologies, energy storage, CO2 capturing, increasing efficiency in the production, transmission, and distribution of electricity and water,” added Al Tayer.
Al Tayer highlighted the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to provide 7% of Dubai’s energy from clean sources by 2020, 25% by 2030 and 75% by 2050. Al Tayer also reviewed DEWA’s efforts to achieve the vision of His Highness and make Dubai a global hub for clean energy and green economy, and the city with the lowest carbon footprint in the world. Al Tayer shared Dewa’s experience in increasing use of renewable energy. This includes the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, which is the largest single-site solar energy project in the world, based on the independent power producer model. The solar park will produce 1,000 MW by 2020 and 5,000MW by 2030 with a total investment of AED 50 billion. It will help achieve a reduction of approximately 6.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually, which supports Dubai Government’s green initiatives and programmes.
Al Tayer pointed that Dewa adopts smart grids that includes demand-side management, asset management, distribution automation, substation automation, system integration, and smart meters, of total AED 7 billion investments. DEWA’s efforts in energy efficiency have contributed to achieving several milestones globally, surpassing major European and American companies in different areas. Losses in power transmission and distribution networks is 3.26%, compared to 6-7% in Europe and the USA. Water network losses is 8.26%, compared to 15% in North America. Customer minutes lost per year reached 3.87 minutes, compared to 15 minutes recorded by leading utilities in the European Union.
The Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 focuses on energy security by diversifying the energy mix, and reducing energy and water use by 30% by 2030. DEWA invests in 9 programmes as part of the demand-side management strategy. These include green building regulations, retrofitting existing buildings, district cooling, wastewater reuse, laws and standards to raise efficiency, energy-efficient street-lighting, and Shams Dubai, which encourages building owners to install photovoltaic panels to generate electricity.
Al Tayer touched on Dubai’s Carbon Abatement Strategy to reduce carbon emissions by 16% by 2021. DEWA contributes over 50% of this target. These targets will be reviewed in light of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050. DEWA established the Etihad Energy Service Company (Super Esco) to encourage energy service companies in the market and to promote energy efficiency business. Over 30,000 existing buildings in Dubai will be retrofitted by 2030.
Commenting on a question about electric cars in Dubai, Al Tayer showcased the Green Charger initiative that Dewa launched for the infrastructure and electric vehicle charging stations. Al Tayer pointed to the importance of the features of electric cars on the economy and environment. In a reply to another question about installing PV panels on houses and buildinfs, Al Tayer pointed that Dewa launched Shams Dubai initiative to encourage household and building owners to install PV panels to generate electricity, and connect them to DEWA’s grid. The electricity is used on site and the surplus is exported to DEWA’s network. An offset between exported and imported electricity units is conducted and the customer account is settled based on this offset.
“DEWA Innovation Centre features a group of research and development centres that specialises in clean energy technologies, drones research, 3D-printing technology, and solar energy based desalination, with a total investment of AED 500 million. The Dubai Green Fund is worth AED 100 billion, and will contribute through its financial resources easy loans and financing tools for investors in clean energy,” said Al Tayer.