The UAE integrates a diversified mix of resources to ensure sustainable power generation

The UAE integrates a diversified mix of resources to ensure sustainable power generation
Meet experts in power generation, transmission and distribution, lighting, solar, and energy management at MEE.
by

Farhana Chowdhury

Published: Tue 5 Mar 2019, 9:24 AM

Last updated: Wed 6 Mar 2019, 11:40 AM

Power generation is the buzzword among manufacturers, distributors and suppliers, as the MENA region marches towards innovation and development. In the UAE alone, several factors contribute to the rise in electricity demand. This includes a number of industrial and construction projects that are currently underway as part of Expo 2020 and the growing population that collectively marked a steady consumption of 5 per cent annual growth rate in the last few years.

The UAE stands tall as a hotspot for the power sector in the region, as it integrates and utilises diversified resources into its energy mix - notably solar, wind and nuclear - to establish sustainable means. The move is in line with its Energy Strategy that aims to generate 75 per cent of electricity from renewables and reduce carbon footprint by the year 2050. The vision further strengthens its transmission and distribution network to fulfil energy needs, according to Networked Energy Services Corporation (NES).

With solar energy in abundance thanks to year-round sunshine, the UAE is testing methods to harvest the energy accordingly. It has established an exclusive lab to test various techniques to harness the power source and identify its best locations through the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, in collaboration with Khalifa University of Science and Technology (KUST) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The lab features real-time maps of solar locations in the UAE, including solar simulation, environmental monitoring and marine environment monitoring systems. IRENA reports that a sustainable mix of renewable energies hold an investment potential of $35 billion per year by 2020.

The need for more power and electricity with a finger on the pulse of renewable energy as the prime focus is essential, which is why the Middle East Electricity exhibition provides an important platform for the sector. Set to take place between March 5 and 7 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, the large-scale event brings in thousands of professionals from all across the globe to showcase state-of-the-art innovation and solutions.

Attendees can access experts in various categories, including power generation, transmission and distribution, lighting, solar, and energy storage and management. Creating networking opportunities, it will also host interactive sessions to address and discuss some of the topics that concern the region.  According to an exclusive market report by Ventures Onsite, the power construction contractor awards in the GCC were forecast to $24 million in 2018, out of which the UAE held $3.9 billion. To date, the UAE's ministry of energy is considering tendering 1,000 MW of renewable-based mega-projects per annum over the next few years to meet its energy targets.

Energy Strategy 2050  
Launched in 2017, the initiative is the UAE's first unified energy strategy based on supply and demand. The goal is to increase the use of clean energy from its existing 25 per cent to 50 per cent, which is expected to cut down carbon footprints created through power generation. With emissions reduced by 70 per cent, this could lead to savings of Dh700 billion by the year 2050.

Statistics

5%  Annual growth rate of electricity consumption in the UAE
75% Clean power generated as part of the UAE's Energy Strategy 2050
$3.9 billion The value of power construction contractor awards in the UAE

- farhana@khaleejtimes.com




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