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‘Solar energy making rapid progress in the region’
January 18, 2017
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ABU DHABI: Rooftop solar energy will help drive renewable energy to the next stage of its development in the Middle East and South Asian markets, said industry experts at the World Future Energy Summit and the Solar Expo in Abu Dhabi.

Renewable energy, particularly solar, is making rapid progress in the region, with organisers estimating that buyers at WFES have more than 200 gigawatts of planned capacity to be added within the next decade. The region is already setting the agenda for utility scale projects, with bids for projects in the UAE bringing below 3 US cents per kilowatt-hour during 2016.

Part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2017, WFES is being held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (Adnec) from January 16 to 19.

The industry expects to see similar progress in rooftop solar, driven by initiatives such as the Shams Dubai programme by Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (Dewa), which encourages PV systems on residential, commercial and industrial buildings. The projects themselves can vary in size from just a few solar panels to thousands. One of the initiatives under the Shams Dubai programme is the installation of 88,000 solar panels on buildings belonging to port operator, DP World, which will produce enough energy to power around 3,000 homes.

“We are at a point where solar energy is clearly at the centre of the UAE’s electricity plans, and we are beginning to see rooftop solar play an important part in this growth,” said Sami Khoreibi, CEO of Abu Dhabi-based Enviromena.

“Official targets are being set for installing rooftop solar panels, and policies allowing customers to sell electricity back into the network are in place. This will fundamentally change the way we think about electricity in the region.”

WAM
 

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