Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group visiting ENOC pavilion after opening WETEX & Dubai Solar Show. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: Sustainability remains front and centre for the UAE, and this was in evidence at the 24th Water, Energy, Technology, and Environment Exhibition (WETEX) and Dubai Solar Show, which opened in Dubai today. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, opened the event.

The industry events are in line with the national strategies of the GCC, which focus on diversifying the economies and reducing dependence on oil and gas, and bringing carbon emissions under check to achieve carbon neutrality. Plus, meet the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030.

"This is part of the framework of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and Dubai Net Zero Carbon Emissions Strategy 2050 to provide 100 per cent of Dubai’s total power capacity from clean energy sources by 2050,” said Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD and CEO of DEWA and Chairman of WETEX and DSS in a statement. “We have leading projects in Dubai, most notably the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest single-site solar park in the world, using the IPP model.”

The plant will have a production capacity of 5,000 MW by 2030, with a total investment of Dh50 billion. When completed, the solar park will reduce more than 6.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.

"We also launched pioneering initiatives and projects, such as solar PV panels technology; Concentrated Solar Power (CSP); green hydrogen production using renewable energy; a hydroelectric power plant in Hatta; and a feasibility study for generating electricity from wind power in Hatta,” said Al Tayer. “Through the IPP model, Dubai has achieved world-class results, thus making Dubai a global benchmark for solar energy prices."

Green energy projects and investments are becoming popular in the region as more competitive prices start to emerge and met with increased investor confidence.

"The success of WETEX and Dubai Solar Show year after year confirms its vital role in consolidating Dubai’s position as a global business hub," said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy. "The exhibition brings together major international companies specialised in the water, energy, environment, and sustainability sectors to display their latest products and innovative technologies and take advantage of the investment opportunities offered by Dubai, which is one of the safest and most stable investment destinations in the world.”

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, accompanied by Matar Humaid Al Tayer, Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer and senior officials, toured the exhibition. They were briefed about the latest technologies, innovations and new products in energy, water desalination, green technologies, clean and renewable energy solutions, environmental sustainability, oil and gas among others.

This year, more than 1,750 companies from 55 countries are participating at WETEX. It will also include 20 national pavilions.