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UAE's Clean Energy Drive: Dubai's Pioneering Strategies Towards Net-Zero by 2050

Central to this strategy is the goal of achieving 100 percent clean energy production capacity by 2050.

May 15, 2024. By Abha Rustagi

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has emerged as a global leader in cultivating a clean and renewable energy sector, demonstrating a commitment to sustainability while spearheading innovative solutions to traditional energy challenges. 

With the launch of the UAE Energy Strategy 2050 in 2017, the nation embarked on a transformative journey, aligning energy production with environmental imperatives and economic growth objectives.

Central to this strategy is the goal of achieving 100 percent clean energy production capacity by 2050, a pledge highlighted by recent initiatives such as the doubling of renewable energy capacity by 2030. This commitment positions the UAE as a pioneer in responding to global climate challenges, in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement.

In Dubai, the epicenter of the UAE's clean energy drive is the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050. Unveiled with a comprehensive roadmap extending until 2050, this strategy underlines Dubai's unique position as the region's sole city with a meticulously planned pathway towards a clean energy future.

Recently, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) updated its strategic vision to reflect a commitment to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This visionary outlook, encapsulated in DEWA's new mission, underscores the alignment with Dubai's overarching principles and its commitment to global leadership in sustainability.

DEWA's strategic pivot towards clean energy is evidenced by its cessation of new fossil fuel projects and its prioritization of more efficient water desalination technologies powered by clean energy sources. The agency's pursuit of efficiency has resulted in a 90 percent fuel consumption efficiency in production units.

In Dubai's clean energy transformation lies the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, a project poised to become the world's largest single-site solar park. With a planned capacity of 5,000 MW by 2030 and investments totaling AED 50 billion, this project symbolizes Dubai's commitment to renewable energy.

DEWA's endeavors extend beyond solar power, encompassing projects such as the Green Hydrogen initiative. Pioneering the production of hydrogen using solar power, this project heralds a new era of clean energy utilization in the MENA region, with potential applications ranging from energy production to transportation.

Moreover, DEWA's investment in a pumped-storage hydroelectric power plant in Hatta underlines its commitment to diversified clean energy sources. With a planned capacity of 250 MW and rapid response capabilities to electricity demand, this project represents a paradigm shift in energy storage solutions in the GCC region.

Through its Innovation Centre and Research and Development (R&D) Centre at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, DEWA continues to spearhead applied research and disruptive technologies to drive energy efficiency and sustainability.

Noteworthy achievements include the doubling of photovoltaic energy efficiency and a 50 percent reduction in land use for solar energy production, showcasing DEWA's commitment to leveraging advanced technologies for environmental stewardship.

Additionally, DEWA's initiatives extend to promoting green mobility through the EV Green Charger Initiative, facilitating the proliferation of electric vehicles across Dubai. DEWA also has plans to expand the public charging infrastructure to 1,000 stations by 2025.

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