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IRENA Opens Super-Sustainable Headquarters In Masdar City

High-level officials from around the world have gathered in Masdar City to celebrate the official opening of the permanent headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Agency.

New  super-sustainable IRENA headquarters in Masdar City (

Said IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin at the official opening earlier this month:

Adnan Z. Amin opens new IRENA world headquarters ( “We are delighted to finally be home in our new global headquarters, an extraordinary building that is a paragon of sustainability throughout the region. Its advantageous location in Masdar City, and in Abu Dhabi, positions the headquarters as a nerve centre for renewable energy action and knowledge for the future.”

The IRENA headquarters building is the first in the UAE to achieve a four-pearl Estidama construction rating for energy, water, and carbon efficiency.

At the geographic center of sustainable Masdar City, the 32,000-square-meter complex consists of three interconnected buildings, which work together to conserve energy and water and create a shared space. Operating from a building that is a symbol of sustainable design and development, IRENA now leads by example.


H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE minister of foreign affairs, commented that “hosting IRENA in Abu Dhabi is a reflection of the UAE’s commitment to expanding access to sustainable, clean energy both domestically and internationally. We look forward to partnering closely with IRENA and countries around the world to support the further development of renewable energy and clean technologies.”

“This ecosystem of innovation is the perfect setting for IRENA’s mission to advance the deployment of renewable energy worldwide,” his colleague UAE Minister of State and Chairman of Masdar, H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, added. “The inauguration of the IRENA headquarters building is a testament to Masdar City’s leadership as a growing hub for the research and development of renewable energy technologies.”

Here are some important building stats:

  • Due to passive design and smart energy management systems, the building demands 42% less energy than global energy-efficiency standards.
  • Altogether, the renewable energy systems output of the building covers more than 10% of the building energy demand.
  • The 1,000 m2 PV rooftop system will produce 305,000 kWh of electricity annually.
  • Solar water heaters equivalent to 27,850 kWh supply 75% of the building’s hot water demand.
  • The building demands approximately 50% less water than similar conventional office buildings in Abu Dhabi.
  • The building is twice as airtight as codes require, reducing the site’s overall energy consumption.
  • The building’s air conditioning system recovers 75% of the energy released as exhaust air and then harnesses it to cool incoming fresh air.

IRENA is the world’s nongovernmental hub for renewable energy cooperation and information exchange. It promotes widespread adoption and sustainable use of all forms of renewable energy, including bioenergy, geothermal, hydropower, ocean, solar, and wind energy. 140 members (139 States and the European Union) comprise its scope, and roughly 32 additional countries are in the accession process and actively engaged.

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covers environmental, health, renewable and conventional energy, and climate change news. She's currently on the climate beat for Important Media, having attended last year's COP20 in Lima Peru. Sandy has also worked for groundbreaking environmental consultants and a Fortune 100 health care firm. She writes for several weblogs and attributes her modest success to an "indelible habit of poking around to satisfy my own curiosity."


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