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Global energy projects set for Abu Dhabi showcase

Global energy projects set for Abu Dhabi showcase

The annual World Future Energy Summit takes place in Abu Dhabi later this month. Alex Blackburne investigates some of the global leaders in energy efficiency and clean technology.

As far as locations for the world’s foremost annual meeting into the future of renewable energy goes, Abu Dhabi, the capital of the oil-rich Middle Eastern state, the United Arab Emirates, is certainly not one that springs to mind straight away.

Maybe it’s not as dependent on fossil fuels as we thought because from the 16th to the 19th of January the 2012 World Future Energy Summit (WFES) will take place there.

According to the event’s website, the city is trying to change its ways. And succeeding, it seems.

As well as being the global headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Abu Dhabi is “investing heavily to become a regional and international powerhouse in renewable and sustainable energy knowledge, technology and capacity”.  

And so, in just a couple of weeks, thousands of representatives from all over the world will fly out to the UAE to showcase their clean, renewable energy projects.

The UAE’s inclusion as both hosts and exhibitors exemplifies the forward steps being taken by countries throughout the Middle East and North African (MENA) region.

One of the most exciting projects to feature at the event, the German-led pioneering solar scheme, Desertec, has big things planned for 2012, after Algeria agreed to host the third project late last year.

Morocco has also signed up to install a large-scale solar farm in its desert. According to Desertec founder, Gerhard Knies, “Within 6 hours, deserts receive more energy from the sun than humankind consumes within a year“.

An overwhelmingly large chunk of Abu Dhabi’s current wealth was made through the extraction of fossil fuels, primarily oil. This shouldn’t be brushed under the carpet. But neither should the country be continually lambasted for it.  

Yes, the Middle Eastern oil reserves are significantly less because of the UAE, but its recent shift in priorities, to become a more renewably-centred state is refreshing, and not just a case of global greenwash.

Blue & Green Tomorrow will bring you all the latest news that emerges from the event in Abu Dhabi.

The key behind the success of such innovative projects is investment. You can invest. Contact your financial adviser, and they’ll tell you how. Don’t have one? Fill in our online form and we’ll put you in touch with a specialist ethical one.  

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