Energy summit in Abu Dhabi to focus on sustainability, innovation

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Global stalwarts and leading policymakers are meeting in Abu Dhabi to discuss the new technologies and framework required to meet the emerging global energy demand.

During the next four days at World Future Energy Summit (WFES) – part of Abu Dhabi’s Sustainability Week – investment innovation in energy, clean technology, and sustainability are key focus areas.

The summit will host forums on water, waste management, green buildings, and mobility-related issues. The water forum from January 14-16 will focus on disrupting the “Water-Energy-Food-Nexus in order to optimize resource efficiency, sustainability and security in arid regions,” WFES organizers said.

International Desalination Association (IDA), a non-profit, is co-organizing the water forum. “The program is rich with stakeholder participation from the public and private sector, as well as UN agencies and international non-profit organizations,” said Shannon McCarthy, IDA Secretary-General.

Another forum on eco-waste tackles the growing problem of solid waste, a crucial issue in low and middle-income countries, including Abu Dhabi.

Many developing economies are still looking to implement the concept of waste management including privatization, recycling, defining zero waste, food waste prevention, waste-to-biofuel, waste to resources, disruptive technology, and cutting back on single-use plastics.

In recent years, energy-guzzling buildings contributing nearly 40 percent of global emissions are under intense debate for greenhouse gas emissions. In past years, rapid urbanization leading to the construction of a large number of buildings has exponentially contributed to energy consumption and pollution.

The expert meeting with building owners, consultants and suppliers will look into ways to enhance energy management. The region’s progress in relation to global green building trends as well as the latest technical solutions to benchmarking buildings’ performance, retrofitting, indoor air quality, and constructing net-zero emission buildings are some of the burning issues under discussion.

Green and renewable energy demand are likely to dominate the discussions. Barely a week ahead of the meeting, Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company announced plans to double its renewable energy capacity in the next five years.

The company plans to start new projects in Asia and the Americas, Mohamed Jameel al Ramahi, the company’s CEO said.

(Cover: Saudi Minister of Energy, Industrial and Mineral Resources Khalid Al-Falih, speaks during the 10th edition of the World Future Energy Summit on January 16, 2017 in the United Arab Emirates capital Abu Dhabi. /VCG Photo)

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