Dubai hosts creative minds at SDME 2021
An Active investment in the young generation's energy and creativity is a fundamental pillar to developing multiple fields and sectors in any country.
In this regard, the UAE has been an exceptional incubator and enabler for creative youth in the Middle East and the wider region, encouraging and directing their energy to establish a more sustainable future. These efforts have cemented the UAE's leading position in various international indices.
Building on the unique vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, DEWA has pioneered sustainability in multiple initiatives, and strategies. DEWA also aims to train and attract innovative youth from the UAE and beyond to share their expertise and vision and establish a sustainable future and contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
To face major climate challenges today, all hands must join together to create a sustainable future. At the forefront of these solutions is the second Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME), organised by DEWA, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, as part of an agreement between DEWA, Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, and US Department of Energy. DEWA has allocated more than 60,000 square metres to host the SDME at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park.
The second edition of SDME gains further significance, as it coincides with Expo 2020 Dubai, which is hosting delegations from 192 countries, and the UAE’s Year of the 50th, to promote further achievements and gains, in line with the wise leadership’s vision for a more sustainable UAE in the next 50 years. The second SDME builds upon the success of the first edition organised for the first time in the Middle East and Africa in November 2018, attracting 600 students from 54 nationalities and 28 universities across 11 countries.
Hosting the competition will help supply the SDME village with clean energy, to operate its recreational areas for workshops, seminars, and key events for students and visitors, in addition to a clinic, restaurants and cafés offering Emirati and international cuisine. DEWA designed the Decathlon Village according to the highest international standards, with all precautionary measures adopted in the UAE against COVID-19.
This round of SDME includes 8 teams from internationally recognised universities. Focusing on 7 related pillars of sustainability, future, innovation, clean energy, transport, smart solutions, and happiness; SDME will integrate the Middle East cultural, social, and climatic environment within its designed houses. Additionally, SDME encourages the younger generation to innovate and unlock their creative potential to support global efforts to mitigate climate change and become future energy leaders. University students work on their projects focusing on delivering smart and efficient solar-powered housing solutions while taking into consideration the environment and climatic conditions of the region.
These houses at SDME are solar powered, with organic, recycled or natural elements to provide a green environment and sustainable lifestyle. The smart and sustainable designs will transform traditional homes in the Middle East into a technological oasis with power efficient and water-saving features, that harness digital technologies for energy efficiency to preserve the health of the planet and its population.
The second round of the Solar Decathlon Middle East will undoubtedly boost DEWA's efforts to enhance UAE's position as a platform for creativity, an incubator for creators, and a destination for innovators from all over the world, in addition to consolidating Dubai's position as a global capital for a green economy.