The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. Pawan Singh / The National
The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. Pawan Singh / The National

The UAE is steadfast in its support and deployment of renewable energy solutions



The United Arab Emirates has been relentless in its pursuit of a greener future, locally developing solar technologies and deploying them globally since 2006. UAE-led solar projects have significantly contributed to reducing the cost of opting for solar energy around the world.

Keeping that in mind and given the fact that the UAE, one of the 10 largest oil producing countries in the world, committed to clean energy resource development at a time when oil prices were peaking a decade ago, I would like to raise a very important question: was the UAE acting of its own volition or to meet a necessity?

The inclination of our leadership to reaffirm the UAE’s position at the forefront of global efforts to address common challenges shows that the drive to increase the local dependence on renewable energy, particularly solar power and boost its demand globally, was indeed an act of its own volition that targeted the creation of a better future.

The approach taken by the UAE leadership was underscored by the level of these challenges, such as the impact of climate change on millions of people around the world. It aimed to meet the growing demand for energy of at least 25 per cent over the next decade, driven by the growth of the global economy, which was difficult to achieve through a single source of energy. Therefore, it was essential for the world to strive to provide the required energy supplies through safe, sustainable and environmentally friendly sources that contribute to reducing the impacts of climate change.

Since 2006, this country has launched several projects and initiatives in this regard. A testimony to the UAE's leading global position as the capital of clean energy is that Abu Dhabi was unanimously approved as the headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Agency in 2009.

A major turning point in the efforts exerted by the UAE to bolster clean energy use is the establishment of Masdar, the regional leader and a major international player in renewable energy development. Masdar helps the UAE go the extra mile, by scrutinising global technologies and customising them to suit the country's specific needs to optimise their returns. The volume of investments so far made by Masdar is around $1.7 billion in global renewable energy projects.

In the past decade, the UAE has intensified its efforts towards deploying solar energy solutions. The country has secured a prominent place in the international solar energy industry through developing world-class solar energy projects, including the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Complex in Dubai, which is the world's largest concentrated solar power project in the world, using the independent power producer model and will generate 5000 megawatts when completed in 2030. The Zayed Renewable Energy Complex in Abu Dhabi is another major solar energy project in the country.

Furthermore, the UAE Energy Strategy 2050 targets increasing the contribution of clean energy in the overall national energy mix to 50 per cent by 2050, saving $190 billion of overall energy costs.

As for its global efforts in this field, the UAE, driven by its commitment to climate change mitigation and improving the lives of hundreds of millions of people living in communities most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, has  announced that it will join the International Solar Alliance, which aims to help developing countries harness 1,000 GW of solar by 2030. The UAE has also launched many initiatives to provide the necessary funding to carry out and develop renewable energy generation projects, such as the initiatives taken by Abu Dhabi Fund for Development and Masdar.

The UAE, thanks to its wise leadership, remains steadfast in its efforts to support and deploy renewable energy solutions, particularly solar energy, both locally and internationally. These efforts have more profound goals to achieve than a mere diversification of the energy sources and preparing for the post-oil era. These goals ultimately aim to save millions of lives that are at risk due to climate change around the world and ensure a better, more sustainable future for generations to come.

Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi is Minister of Climate Change and Environment

KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES

Director: Wes Ball

Starring: Owen Teague, Freya Allen, Kevin Durand

Rating: 3.5/5

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

If you go...

Fly from Dubai or Abu Dhabi to Chiang Mai in Thailand, via Bangkok, before taking a five-hour bus ride across the Laos border to Huay Xai. The land border crossing at Huay Xai is a well-trodden route, meaning entry is swift, though travellers should be aware of visa requirements for both countries.

Flights from Dubai start at Dh4,000 return with Emirates, while Etihad flights from Abu Dhabi start at Dh2,000. Local buses can be booked in Chiang Mai from around Dh50

MATCH INFO

Euro 2020 qualifier

Fixture: Liechtenstein v Italy, Tuesday, 10.45pm (UAE)

TV: Match is shown on BeIN Sports

UAE and Russia in numbers

UAE-Russia ties stretch back 48 years

Trade between the UAE and Russia reached Dh12.5 bn in 2018

More than 3,000 Russian companies are registered in the UAE

Around 40,000 Russians live in the UAE

The number of Russian tourists travelling to the UAE will increase to 12 percent to reach 1.6 million in 2023

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
Based: Cambridge and Dubai
Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

The specs: 2018 Maserati GranTurismo/GranCabrio

Price, base Dh485,000 (GranTurismo) and Dh575,000 (GranCabrio)

Engine 4.7L V8

Transmission Six-speed automatic

Power 460hp @ 7,000rpm

Torque 520Nm @ 4,750rpm

Fuel economy, combined 14.3L (GranTurismo) and 14.5L (GranCabrio) / 100km

RACE CARD

6.30pm: Handicap (TB) $68,000 (Dirt) 1,600m

7.05pm: Meydan Sprint – Group 2 (TB) $163,000 (Turf) 1,000m

7.40pm: Curlin Stakes – Listed Handicap (TB) $88,000 (D) 2,200m

8.15pm: UAE Oaks – Group 3 (TB) $125,000 (D) 1,900m

8.50pm: Zabeel Mile – Group 2 (TB) $163,000 (T) 1,600m

9.25pm: Balanchine – Group 2 (TB) $163,000 (T) 1,800m

10pm: Al Shindagha Sprint – Group 3 (TB) $130,000 (D) 1,200m

The biog

Favourite films: Casablanca and Lawrence of Arabia

Favourite books: Start with Why by Simon Sinek and Good to be Great by Jim Collins

Favourite dish: Grilled fish

Inspiration: Sheikh Zayed's visionary leadership taught me to embrace new challenges.

Company profile

Name: Infinite8

Based: Dubai

Launch year: 2017

Number of employees: 90

Sector: Online gaming industry

Funding: $1.2m from a UAE angel investor

The specs: 2019 Haval H6

Price, base: Dh69,900

Engine: 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder

Transmission: Seven-speed automatic

Power: 197hp @ 5,500rpm

Torque: 315Nm @ 2,000rpm

Fuel economy, combined: 7.0L / 100km

Disturbing facts and figures

51% of parents in the UAE feel like they are failing within the first year of parenthood

57% vs 43% is the number of mothers versus the number of fathers who feel they’re failing

28% of parents believe social media adds to the pressure they feel to be perfect

55% of parents cannot relate to parenting images on social media

67% of parents wish there were more honest representations of parenting on social media

53% of parents admit they put on a brave face rather than being honest due to fear of judgment

Source: YouGov

RESULTS

5pm: Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 1,600m
Winner: Omania, Saif Al Balushi (jockey), Ibrahim Al Hadhrami (trainer)
5.30pm: Conditions (PA) Dh85,000 1,600m
Winner: Brehaan, Richard Mullen, Ana Mendez
6pm: Handicap (TB) Dh100,000 1,600m
Winner: Craving, Connor Beasley, Simon Crisford
6.30pm: The President’s Cup Prep (PA) Dh100,000 2,200m
Winner: Rmmas, Tadhg O’Shea, Jean de Roualle
7pm: Wathba Stallions Cup (PA) Dh70,000 1,200m
Winner: Dahess D’Arabie, Connor Beasley, Helal Al Alawi
7.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 1,400m
Winner: Fertile De Croate, Sam Hitchcott, Ibrahim Aseel