The CEO and managing director of the Dubai Water and Electricity Authority has announced that various efforts are underway to help facilitate the expansion of 2,500 MW of rooftop solar by 2030. If it achieves this ambitious goal, about 20 percent of its total energy needs would be meet by this venture.
A 1,000MW, $3.5 billion project, the Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park is a central focus for expanding solar power. The first phase of this development is a modest 10 MW and it should be completed by the end of 2013. Currently, natural gas, LNG, and diesel oil are some of the key energy sources there.
Moving towards solar power is very sensible considering the abundance of sunlight which is available. “The potential for this region is huge, with each square kilometre of land receiving every year an amount of solar energy that is equivalent to 1.5 million barrels of crude oil, ” said Helene Pelosse, director general of the International Renewable Energy Authority.
Dubai is the name of an emirate, and a city. They city’s economy was built on the oil industry, so the shift to solar is a significant transition. Dubai City has been the site of much development in terms of new buildings and other infrastructure.
Recently, a declaration about the importance of energy access for all citizens in Dubai was made: “We commend the host country the UAE for its Vision 2021 for a green economy, its emergence as a global champion for sustainable energy, responsible development and the efficient use of hydrocarbon resources and Dubai as a role model for its vision, innovations, and achievements in energy efficiency.”
If solar power is contagious, as has been reported, it will be fascinating to see if Dubai’s lead will spark similar enthusiasm in neighboring countries.
Image Credit: .EVO. from UAE
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