Dubai, UAE, 23 September 2019: Ahmad Bin Shafar, CEO of Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation (Empower), the world's largest district cooling services provider, participated in the panel discussion entitled ‘The Current State of SDG 7: Energy Efficiency', along with Minister of Mines and Energy, Government of Colombia, Minister of the Environment, Government of Italy and Director General, European Partnership for Energy and the Environment, as part of the ‘Energy Action Forum' “Accelerating Energy Transition 2020 and Beyond”. This took place in the United Nations' Climate Action Summit 2019, which is being taking place at the UN headquarters.
The forum aims to unite the efforts of global leaders through their governments, along with the private sector and civil society, and accelerate actions to implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. It also supports the multilateral process to save the planet from climate change, further accelerate ambitious climate actions and improve energy use, and enhance communication and collaborative action through targeted communication to relevant policy makers, regulators, investors, financial organisations, energy project developers, industrial partners and civil society actors.
Attended by 200 business leaders and government organisations, the forum was rich with the presence of a number of decision makers in the public and private sectors in the energy sector, in addition to investors and solution providers.
“Governments should establish strong policies and abandon conventional solutions to support global efforts for energy efficiency. Corporations also can play their role by forming action plans to transform existing energy-consuming to energy saving products and solutions, adopt innovative solutions in operations, and financing actions for energy efficiency.,” said Bin Shafar.
“As for consumers, public awareness campaigns should be implemented to foster the culture of energy efficiency, alternative solutions should be promoted to replace conventional methods, agencies should be encouraged to fund for energy efficiency actions, and confidence should be built among governments and corporations to adopt efficient solutions in key sectors including cooling, transportation and manufacturing,” continued Bin Shafar.
Bin Shafar stressed that district cooling is an effective alternative solution that reduces carbon emissions, providing clean and efficient cooling, accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels. Using of innovative technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI) in district cooling operations has increased the operational efficiency of the sector. He highlighted that the UAE Vision 2021 is one of the live example of action for energy efficiency, which has scored 77% in quality of air in the UAE, as per 2018 report.
“The key factors that will make energy efficiency fulfill its 40% plus promise on the Paris Agreement, include the development of strong regulatory and monitoring systems across countries, implementing public awareness campaigns to educate and build confidence, adoption of efficient solutions like district cooling, which saves electricity up to 50%, standardization of energy management systems, and financing for energy efficiency,” noted Bin Shafar.
“The current examples of best practices across energy efficiency are the successful story of Dubai model district cooling which supports the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030, the strategy aims to achieve 75% of clean energy by 2050, and to meet 40% of the cooling demand through district energy solutions by 2030, and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park,” continued Bin Shafar.
Bin Shafar highlighted that the UN Environment's ‘District Energy in Cities' Initiative and ‘Cool Coalition' initiative, global organizations like IDEA and ASHRAE, and the UAE Energy strategy are supporting to accelerate current initiatives and increase coordination of current players.
The UN Climate Action Summit 2019, held on the sidelines of the 74th regular session of the UN General Assembly, is attended by a number of leaders, kings, presidents, and heads of state, with the aim of drawing up short and long-term global action plans to combat and reduce harmful emissions, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions.
Empower provides district cooling services to more than 1,090 buildings, catering to more than 100,000 customers. The company operates more than 1.43 Million Refrigeration Tons (RT), providing environmentally friendly district cooling services to large-scale real estate developments, such as Bluewaters, Jumeirah Group, Business Bay, Jumeirah Beach Residence, Dubai International Financial Centre, Palm Jumeirah, Jumeirah Lake Towers, Ibn Battuta Mall, Discovery Gardens, Dubai Healthcare City, Dubai World Trade Centre Residences and Dubai Design District, International Media Production Zone and others.