Over the past 50 years there have been many milestones in the development and progress of the UAE and now, with the start-up of Unit 2 at Al Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, this nation is well and truly on its way to providing much of its power needs from clean and renewable sources.
Unit 1 at the plant has been fully operational for the past five months and now, as Unit 2 is eased into its full operational capacity, the UAE is well on its way to providing a quarter of its power needs from carbon-free sources.
When all four units are online and operating at full capacity, half of the electricity needed to power the homes, offices, industries and commercial operations of this nation and its services, schools, hospitals and resources, will be generated at Al Barakah.
What’s also significant now as we mark international women’s day, some 20 per cent of the staff at the plant are female, showing that there are no limits when it comes to playing an equal role in the family, in society or in the workplace.
We live in an age too where the environment is changing, where our planet is warming and where climate change is fast becoming the pressing issue for our leaders and our future generations.
The only realistic way forward is to cut our dependency on fuels that release carbon dioxide into our atmosphere, exacerbating the greenhouse effect that warms our planet. But the power generated at Al Barakah is clean and eliminates fossil fuels from the environmental equation. The energy that will continue to power this nation’s growth is environmentally friendly, it is abundant and comes from a reliable source.
It’s important to note too that the project at Al Barakah underscores the potential for peace and progress from atomic power. All of the activities of the Emirates nuclear programme meet the highest international safety standards and are in full and verified compliance with international nuclear regulatory agencies.
Work and development at Al Barakah continues with each passing day and the scale of the project underlines the ambition and organisational capabilities of all involved in their mega project.
A year ago, Unit 1 was loaded with fissile materials and the testing period got underway, ensuring the safe and reliable functioning of the reaction core there.
Seven months later, it was at full power. Now with Unit 2 coming on stream, it will be a matter of months before it too is fully powered up. Units 3 and 4 will follow in good stead in a safe and timely manner, decarbonising our energy sector with each passing day.