Monday 28, September 2015

Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: Abu Dhabi Quality and Conformity Council (QCC), the entity responsible for developing quality infrastructure and raising awareness on quality standards in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, has joined hands with Masdar Institute of Science and Technology to conduct research on the technical potential of renewable energy technologies that may be implemented in Abu Dhabi given its climatic conditions and availability of resources.

In parallel, New York’s Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs investigated policy tools that would encourage implementation of these technologies in Abu Dhabi.

The findings of the research will be published and shared with key government stakeholders. Furthermore, the outcomes will be presented at the 10th Conference on Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems currently underway in Dubrovnik, Croatia until October 3, under the theme ‘Sustainability of Energy Production and Utilization in the Arabian Gulf’.

The scope of the research primarily includes solar energy, offshore wind power, as well as waste-to-energy to a lesser extent. The final published report will serve as a guideline and support the efforts of QCC and its stakeholders from various government entities to develop conformity schemes and related technical specifications for products and systems that use renewable energy and ensure their compliance with the standard requirements of Abu Dhabi emirate.

Sultan Saeed Al Mehairi, Director of Information Service and Engagement at QCC, said: “Abu Dhabi is currently pursuing an ambitious renewable energy program that is aligned with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and the UN Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) program. In keeping with this priority, QCC is committed to supporting the government’s sustainability agenda with regard to renewable energy and energy efficiency through research, as well as the development of standards and conformity schemes and services.

“The continued decline in the cost of generating solar energy to levels below conventional fossil fuels has made it the preferred option for renewable electricity generation today. Large scale use of renewable energy has the potential to considerably reduce government spending on imported gas that is already prohibitively expensive, with costs only likely to continue their upward spiral in the future.”

He added: “Our collaboration with Masdar Institute of Science and Technology and Columbia University will prepare the ground for the rapid adoption of renewable energy sources in the emirate through developing the required testing and certification tools to ensure their compliance to highest international standards.”

Dr Steve Griffiths, Vice-President for Research and and Interim Associate Provost, Masdar Institute,  said: “This partnership with QCC provides the information and analysis necessary for informed decision making regarding deployment of renewable energy technologies. We hope that this collaboration will have impact in the UAE and elsewhere in the region where decisions are being made about energy technologies most appropriate to meet growing demand.”

According to Dr Jens Ejbye Schmidt, Head, Institute Center for Energy (iEnergy), who was the principal investigator for this research at Masdar Institute, Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy (RE) 2020 target can be secured with commercially available technologies, based upon the techno-economic analysis. He added that the additional 1.4 GW (7% RE) can be shared with 35% solar photovoltaic, 30% wind-onshore, 10% wind-offshore, 5% concentrated solar power with storage, and 20% waste to energy.

The Abu Dhabi Quality and Conformity Council was established in 2009 to raise the quality of the emirate’s exports and locally traded products, while protecting the interests of consumers and supporting the UAE’s competitive economy. This is achieved through empowering regulators to establish and implement product safety, legal metrology and conformity schemes. QCC also sets guidelines and benchmarks to identify and verify that the products manufactured and traded in Abu Dhabi conform to the highest quality standards.