Legislation is a key element in Dubai’s transformation into a global centre for clean energy
Global competitiveness, innovation, leadership, and development are major elements that shape the future of the UAE, which is making steady and sure progress in its transformation into one of the most developed countries in the world by 2021. The UAE’s leadership gives special importance to the energy and water sectors, which have played a major role in the Emirate’s development over the last few decades. The leadership realises the importance of developing prosperity based on innovation and sustainability, to achieve a better future for generations to come.
Developing the legislative infrastructure in the energy sector is a major factor in the nation’s efforts to transform Dubai into a global hub for clean energy and green economy. Legislation is one of five major pillars of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, launched by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The strategy aims to provide 7% of Dubai’s total power output from clean energy by 2020, 25% by 2030, and 75% by 2050. One of DEWA’s key projects is the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, which is the largest single-site solar project in the world, based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model. It will produce 1,000MW by 2020 and 5,000MW by 2030.
Dubai has always been a pioneer in developing and modernising legislation that support the electricity and water sectors based on regulations that are a major factor in the energy sector and contribute towards achieving sustainable development. HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, issued law number 6 of 2011, regulating the participation of the private sector in electricity and water production in Dubai. The law protects the electricity and water infrastructure from potential damage and enhances the readiness of the public network to meet the Emirate’s increasing demand for electricity and water.
To regulate connecting electricity produced from photovoltaic panels to the power distribution system in Dubai, the Dubai Executive Council issued resolution number 46 for 2014. The resolution issued by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, was a significant step towards the growth of the green economy, and building a safe and sustainable future. The legislation establishes comprehensive legislative framework to connect electricity produced from solar power to the power grid. This supports the Smart Dubai initiative, to transform Dubai into the smartest city in the world. The resolution supports efforts to diversify the energy mix by increasing the percentage of renewable energy. It also protects the environment by limiting carbon emissions and encouraging the clean generation of electricity. The resolution also supports DEWA’s Shams Dubai initiative, which allows building owners to install systems to generate electricity using photovoltaic panels. 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.
HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum issued law number 3 of 2015 establishing the UAE Water Aid Foundation. This is another milestone for Dubai to support international efforts to provide clean drinking water, combat water-related diseases that threaten lives, and protect water from pollution. The law enables the Foundation to find permanent and sustainable solutions to water scarcity around the world. This is done using the latest technologies, desalinating water using solar power, and providing new and innovative technological solutions for communities that suffer from scarcity and contamination of drinking water. The Foundation will conduct studies and research to tackle water scarcity by using solar power.
HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum issued resolution number 43 of 2015 on the fees of the Regulatory and Supervisory Bureau for Electricity and Water for Dubai. The resolution enables the Bureau to carry out its duties and exercise the authority assigned to it pursuant to law number 6 of 2011, regulating the participation of the private sector in electricity and water generation in Dubai.
Backed by strong legislation, ambitious aspiration, and government support, Dubai is steadily moving towards achieving the objectives of the Dubai Plan 2021 to develop a smart city that is sustainable with its resources, using best international practices with regard to consumption, efficiency, and management. This will contribute to achieving sustainable development without causing any harm to the environment.