The programme encourages building owners to install photovoltaic solar panels to produce clean energy and connect them to DEWA's grid
Dubai is developing a programme that will allow 10 percent of its homes to be self-sufficient in terms of water, food and energy – mainly with the help of clean solar projects, said a government official.
"The achievement of this goal will help change lifestyles and contribute to the preservation of our environment. We aim to create a new economic sector that supports energy, water, and food self-sufficiency," said Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, vice chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and MD and CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa).
The project, which will see the installation of solar panels in citizens’ homes, will be implemented under the government’s Shams Dubai initiative.
Dewa launched the Shams Dubai initiative in 2015 to help make the emirate “the smartest and happiest city in the world,” Al Tayer told Trade Arabia.
The programme encourages building owners to install photovoltaic solar panels to produce clean energy and connect them to DEWA’s grid. By the end of July this year, Shams Dubai had connected 1,328 buildings connected to the grid with a total capacity of 102.1 MW.
According to Al Tayer, there has been a global boom in the manufacture and usage of photovoltaic (PV) solar panels.
"Research and development centres are racing to find sustainable solutions to improve the efficiency of these panels and prolong their life by storing solar energy in batteries, using solar panel-cleaning robots and sun-tracking systems to maximise the productivity of PV," he said.
"This past decade has truly been the era of PV, with people and businesses around the world producing and manufacturing more panels. Manufacturing and application of PV is also creating many new jobs," stated Al Tayer.
"Very soon, we will use PV in additional areas including in the infrastructure we use every day, as well as in our home and office windows, to convert solar energy into electricity. Our buildings will soon become self-sufficient and produce clean energy while preserving the environment," he added.
Al Tayer pointed out that several government entities and companies had proven their leadership in this field regionally and globally, and Dewa was the first to adopt the usage of clean energy technologies in the UAE.
"The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park is the world’s largest single-site project to generate renewable energy. It will have a capacity of 5,000 megawatts (MW) by 2030 with investments of Dh50 billion ($13.6 billion)," he noted.
The MENA region will need to invest $209 billion in the power sector over the next five years, according to a recent report by The Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation.
The latest MENA Power Investment Outlook 2019-2023 estimates that investment in the MENA energy sector could reach $1 trillion, with the power sector accounting for the largest share at 36 per cent, spurred by growing electricity demand and greater momentum for renewable energy.