Jebel Ali Free Zone has been continuously implementing green initiatives over the years.
Dubai - The initiation of the present retrofit project further reinforces its commitment to green initiatives.
Economic Zones World, or EZW, has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority's Etihad Esco to retrofit its existing buildings and facilities to make them more energy efficient.
The agreement is in line with its strategic goal to make Jebel Ali Free Zone, or Jafza, the most energy efficient business hub.
Jafza has always been in the forefront of implementing the government's green initiatives to promote and preserve sustainable ecosystem. The initiation of the present retrofit project further reinforces its commitment.
The move is an important step forward in the direction of achieving the government's Dubai 2021 plan and following the directives of His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to use technology and innovation to convert Dubai into a sustainable green city. The project will significantly reduce Jafza's carbon footprint and will make its operations more sustainable and efficient.
The first phase of the project comprises energy retrofit of 157 staff accommodation buildings in Jafza and includes replacement of 5000 old air-conditioners with highly efficient split units, 85,000 old light fixtures with high-efficiency LEDs and 31,000 old water fixtures with new efficient water units.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, chairman of DP World and Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said: "The utility cost is the second-largest expense for Jafza. The power and water consumption level in Jafza crossed 75 million kWh and 750 million IG per year respectively. As a pioneering free zone and top business hub, we felt the urgent need to make our old commercial and residential buildings more energy efficient.
"As a result, EZW and Etihad Energy, a subsidiary of the Dewa, developed a detailed technical scope for an energy conservation project and invited top licenced and certified specialists to participate in this mega project in Jafza. After a rigorous tendering and selection process we selected Etihad Esco for their viable energy conservation measures to achieve an average consumption savings of 28 per cent of power, 36 per cent of water while reducing carbon footprint by 75,000 tonnes during the six-year project. It is the largest energy retrofit project in the entire Middle East. I consider this initiative to be a major step forward in making Expo 2020 in Dubai a grand success since sustainability is one of the key components of the upcoming global event."
Saeed Al Tayer, chairman of Etihad Esco, said: "This is a significant milestone in the history of Etihad Esco as we sign the largest energy retrofit project of UAE and the Middle East. Our commitment is to enhance energy efficiency and this project is intended to reduce water consumption and electricity usage thereby saving a significant sum. Etihad Esco is committed to establish Dubai as a leader in energy efficiency solutions, and this partnership will further commitment to that."
Jafza has been continuously implementing green initiatives over the years. Specific measures undertaken by Jafza to save energy include the installation of timer controlled devices and photocells in parking areas, corridors and other parts of the buildings as well as replacement of old lighting fixtures with LED in Jafza buildings. Water-saving devices have also been installed in office buildings resulting in 23 per cent water savings.