Dubai’s energy transition beats 2020 target


Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has announced that the emirate’s transition to clean energy, targeted at 7% for 2020, has been exceeded, with 9% of the regions 11,700MW electricity requirements powered by solar, and other renewables.

The achievement exceeds the target set in the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which aims to provide 75% of Dubai’s total power output from clean energy sources by 2050.

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The share of clean energy is in large part thanks to the 1,013MW of concentrated solar power (CSP), and solar PV contributed by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest such facility in the world.

Total capacity of the projects under construction at the park is 1,850MW from photovoltaic and CSP, with DEWA predicting capacity topping 5,000MW by 2030.

“Since its launch, the solar park’s projects have received considerable interest from global developers, which reflects the confidence of investors from around the world in DEWA’s major projects,” said Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA.

“We recently signed the power purchase agreement for the 900MW, 5th phase of the solar park with a consortium led by ACWA Power and Gulf Investment Corporation. The total investments of the project exceed AED 2 billion. The project achieved a new record by receiving the lowest international bid of $1.6953 cents per kilowatt-hour using photovoltaic solar panels based on the Independent Power Producer model,” added Al Tayer.

The solar park, which first commenced operations in 2013, powers 50,000 residences in Dubai, whilst reducing carbon emissions in the region by 214,000 tonnes annually.

The project will feature the tallest solar tower in the world at 260 metres, powering 600MW of CSP capacity in the region, along with what DWA claims will be the biggest global thermal storage capacity in the world. It will also have 15 hours of storage capacity to boost demand management and resilience efforts.

The fifth phase, expected to be commissioned in stages starting from Q3 of 2021, will have a capacity of 900MW using photovoltaic solar panels, to power a projected 270,000 residences in Dubai, and offset a projected 1.18 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually.

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