The U.A.E’s leadership recently committed to a 7% renewable energy target by 2020. The U.A.E is planning for a future less dependent on oil. The Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company known as (Masdar) is fully committed to finding low cost renewable energy technologies that can be rolled out on a large scale, giving safe and clean power to many. Masdar has already sent out tenders for international companies and has awarded several contracts for the construction of concentrated solar power plants and are in the process of reviewing technologies for using wind turbines to generate electricity.
Recently, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has been founded and the U.A.E has been awarded to become the home of the IRENA in Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City. Masdar and IRENA share the same vision, many of Masdar’s objectives are aligned with IRENA’s mission in seeking to advance renewable energy by sharing knowledge, developing the necessary regulatory frameworks, and actively promoting the large scale adoption of renewable energy around the world.
Part of the Masdar initiative is Masdar City, the world’s first carbon neutral, zero waste city completely powered by renewable energy. Masdar City will become a blueprint for cities around the world striving for sustainability and intends to attract international businesses, academics, entrepreneurs and advocates. Eventually growing to over 50,000 residents, Masdar City will test the boundaries of current and future thinking in sustainable design.
This city of the future is only the beginning of the U.A.E’s commitment to developing sustainable energy sources that can meet the predicted national annual peak demand of more than 40,000 megawatts by 2020. The U.A.E welcomes America’s private industry to participate in achieving this ambitious goal.
Focusing on capacity building, Masdar has included an entire division dedicated to developing some of the world’s largest solar farms and will invest significantly with leading global venture capital groups in developing cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Masdar will also soon feature the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, a state-of-the-art research center and university which will be done in partnership with MIT.
Similar projects and initiatives are also the center of attention in other emirates. Dubai is exploring renewable energy options, such as solar, wind power, hydrogen and nuclear-based power stations as an alternative to fossil-fuel based energy sources. The Mohamed bin Rashed Solar park is one of these flagship projects that will produce over 1000MW by 2030.