Solar panels on every roof by 2030: Dubai's $13.6bn ‘clean energy’ drive

Three-quarters of energy to be produced using renewable sources by 2050 and solar panels on all roofs by 2030, gov't says
Solar panels on every roof by 2030: Dubai's $13.6bn ‘clean energy’ drive
(Getty Images)
By Sarah Townsend
Sun 29 Nov 2015 11:26 AM

Dubai has launched a $13.6 billion strategy to produce 75 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2050.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Saturday unveiled the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, as part of efforts to develop the ‘green economy’ and reduce dependence on fossil fuels.

Under the strategy, 7 percent of Dubai’s energy would come from ‘clean’ energy sources such as solar panels by 2020; 25 percent by 2030 and 75 percent by 2050.

Sheikh Mohammed announced the plans while inaugurating the second phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai, where he revealed plans for a new free zone called the Dubai Green Zone.

The zone's aim is to attract renewable energy companies from across the world, and house new research and development centres.

Solar energy is expected to account for 25 percent of the emirate’s power requirements by 2050 after the fourth phase of the solar park commences in 2030. The ambition is for solar panels to be installed on the roofs of all buildings in Dubai by 2030.

Meanwhile nuclear and ‘clean’ coal are expected to provide 7 percent each of Dubai’s energy requirements, and gas 61 percent.

Other components of the strategy include an AED100 billion ($27.2 billion) Dubai Green Fund, which would provide “easy loans for investors in the clean energy sector at reduced interest rates”.

A new “innovation centre” would be built using 3D printing technology, according to state news agency WAM, incorporating a solar energy technology test centre, drones research centre and solar energy-based desalination tests centre to develop skills and expertise in the sector.

The government is to pump AED500 million into new research and development focused on smart grids, energy efficiency and solar electricity generation, it said.

A final part of the strategy is the introduction of new legislation to support the implementation of clean energy policies.

For example, the government will work with the Shams Dubai initiative to devise new requirements for building owners to place solar panels on their roofs and link them to the main Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) network.

Sheikh Mohammed said: “The strategy we are launching today will shape the energy sector in Dubai over the next three decades. It aims to provide 75 percent of the emirate’s energy through clean energy sources by 2050, reflecting our commitment to establish a sustainable model in energy conservation which can be exported to the whole world, and support economic growth without damaging the environment and natural resources.

“Our goal is to become the city with the least carbon footprint in the world by 2050.”

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