Dubai – MENA Herald: Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has received the awards for Best Roof-top Solar Project of the Year and Best Government Entity Effective Policy of the Year at this year’s Middle East Solar Awards. The awards were given in recognition of DEWA’s Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park project and its recently-launched Shams Dubai initiative. The awards recognise the accomplishments made by DEWA in the region’s solar energy sector.

“We are pleased to win these two awards from the Middle East Solar Awards 2015 for the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park and the Shams Dubai initiative, which were both launched by DEWA. These wins reflect DEWA’s commitment towards reinforcing Dubai’s reputation in solar energy and sustainability and enhancing its position in the regionally and globally. It also reflects our commitment to the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to create a green economy through the launch of our three new, promising initiatives: Shams Dubai, Smart Applications & Meters and Green Chargers. Shams Dubai encourages tenants and building owners alike, to install photovoltaic solar panels to generate electricity. In addition to meeting the power needs of the building, any surplus will be exported to DEWA’s grid. The initiative is part of our strategy to diversify the energy mix,” said HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority.

“Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park is an accomplishment that will put the UAE at the forefront of the countries producing renewable and clean energy. His Highness introduced the second stage of the project, which is one of the largest strategic renewable energy projects in the world, based on the independent power producer (IPP) model. The total capacity of the solar park will reach 5,000MW by 2030. DEWA has succeeded in obtaining the lowest price globally, at USD 5.4 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), this contributed to the increase of investments in renewable and clean energy within Dubai, and the region. Dubai Supreme Council of Energy has increased the target of energy mix in Dubai from 1% to 7% by 2020 and from 5% to 25% by 2030. The project comes in line with Dubai’s for Plan 2021, to follow the Green Economy for Sustainable Development initiative, launched by His Highness to make the UAE one a pioneering country in the race towards sustainability, and a centre for export, and re-export of green products and technologies.”

Al Tayer noted the importance of Dubai hosting the Solar Decathlon Middle East, which has been agreed upon by the Supreme Council of Energy, DEWA and the Department of Energy of the United States Government. The event is expected to see the participation by universities from around the world. Dubai will host two successive versions of the competition, held for the first time in the Middle East, taking place in 2018 and 2020, and coinciding with the World Expo 2020 in Dubai.

“The objective of this competition is to raise and spread awareness regarding environment issues, in order to encourage people to adopt a greener lifestyle, to create a potential market for solar products in the region, and to provide a platform for local universities to develop solar energy solutions based on the local climate. The competition will also evaluate different customised techniques, and solutions according to the region’s climate, to develop new products,” concluded Al Tayer.