Sun Shines in Dubai With Shams: A Journey of Renewable Energy Space in the United Arab Emirates

Abstract

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD and CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), has a dream for the future of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) that involves renewable energy significantly contributing to the energy mix of the country. Shams Dubai was launched as a smart initiative to connect solar energy to buildings, a part of the Distributed Renewable Resources Generation programme. The case encourages students to analyze the business process, innovation, and value chain of Shams Dubai. It highlights the viability of the process of expanding renewable energy in the context of the UAE and discusses the current and long-term effectiveness of Shams Dubai. The business question deals with the scalability of Shams Dubai and addresses the concern of the strategic planning head, Mr. Ahmad, in meeting the Demand Side Management targets of 2030. Another business question involves the feasibility of Shams Dubai meeting the objectives of individuals and organizations in the installation of solar rooftops.

Shams Dubai was launched in 2014 in response to Executive Council Resolution 46 that called for the connection of solar energy to the distribution grid of Dubai. Dubai Government’s Supreme Council of Energy had set a target of renewable energy supplying 1% of Dubai’s energy mix by 2020 and 5% by 2030 under the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 plan. Initial results are encouraging and suggest that this project will be successful. It will be interesting to see if sustainable growth of Shams Dubai and the Demand Side Management strategy is realized. Will the targets of 2030 and 2050 be met? Will the policy mechanisms and stakeholder structures that have been put in place be sufficiently robust to drive this in the future? Is Shams Dubai viable, and will it meet the objectives of a sustainable future for the UAE?

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Resources
Appendix A: List of Abbreviations

DEWA

Dubai Water and Electricity Board

PV

Photovoltaic

DIES

Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030

GCC

Gulf Cooperation Council

TW-h

Terawatt-hours

KWh

Kilowatt hour

CSP

Concentrated Solar Power

RE

Renewable Energy

DSM

Demand Side Management

DSCE

Dubai Supreme Council for Energy

nZEB

Near Zero Energy Building

DGBR

Dubai Government building regulation

EUI

Energy Use Intensities

ESCO

Energy Service Company

EPS

Energy Performance Services

MEPS

Minimum Energy performance standards

ESMA

Emirates Standards and Measuring Authority

TSE

Treated Sewage Effluent

DM

Dubai Municipality

RTA

Road and Transport Authority

GWh

Giga Watt hours

Appendix B: List of Dubai Demand Side Management programs and targets

DSM program

Program owner

Primary target areas

2030 targets, electricity

2030 targets, water

TWh

% of total DSM consumption savings

BIG

% of total DSM consumption savings

Building Regulations

Dubai Municipality

Full implementation of DGBRS 2010 in new buildings and update regulations to increase electricity and water savings

5.13

26.75

14.95

32.3

Building Retrofits

Etihad Energy Services

Reducing the energy intensity of 30,000 bukiding by 2030

1.68

8.77

5.64

12.19

District Cooling

Etihad Energy Services

Raising District cooling to 40% of the cooling market by 2030

3.36

17.52

-

-

Standards and Labels for Appliances and Equipment

Emirates Authority for standardization and metrology

Develop, implement, and update water and electricity efficiency standards and labels for high consuming appliances in the UAE

4.19

21.84

8.07

17.43

Water Reuse and Efficient Irrigation

Dubai Municipality

Irrigate public areas using TSE, implementing efficiency measures in Dubai’s green areas

-

-

8.06

17.41

Outdoor Lighting

Roads and Transport Authority

Adopting high-efficiency lighting in roads and public areas in new installations and retrofitting existing ones

0.22

1.15

-

-

Tariff Rates

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority

Using price signaling as a tool to induce and develop dynamic consumer behavior with respect to water and electricity consumption.

4.6

23.96

9.56

20.65

Shams Dubai

Etihad Energy Services

Encourage the usage of solar photovoltaic systems by home and building owners

Appendix C: Input and Output Parameters in Shams Calculator

Parameter

Details

Notes

Sustainability Score (output)

Numeric measure of the potential of a building roof for electricity generation

On a scale of 1-5.
0–400,000 Wh >>1
400,000–800,000 Wh >>2
>1,600,000 Wh >> 5

Savings on Electricity Charges (output)

If users are registered as DEWA customers, they get to know how much can be saved.

Only for DEWA customers

Avoided Carbon Emission (output)

The estimated reduction in Carbon Footprint. 

Based on Dubai emission factor: 1 MWh of electricity generated with the current production mix equals to 424.1 kilograms of carbon dioxide

Trees Grown (output)

Another way to express carbon footprint

1000 kg of carbon dioxide is equivalent to 25.92 tree seedlings grown for 10 years.

Estimated Electricity Production (output)

Insolation is expressed in kWh/m2 of installed solar panel

Calculated for each individual solar panel and aggregate the total amount.

Modifiable parameters (input)

Several parameters of solar panel installation can be modified.

Solar panel number; Solar panel orientation; Solar panel angle or tilt (expressed in degrees from the horizon); Spacing between the rows of the solar panels; Solar panel efficiency

Source: Author’s understanding from DEWA calculator (Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, 2019b)

Appendix D: List of Major Projects by Shams Dubai

Project Title

Location and Premise

Project Model

Execution Model: Executed by

Model Led by:

Year: 2018
Capacity: 10.4 MWp

An aerial view of solar panels installed on the rooftops of factory buildings.

Mai Dubai Bottling Factory

A logo of Mai Dubai.

Direct ownership -DEWA

A logo of Dubai Electricity & Water Authority.

Enerwhere

A logo of Enerwhere.

A logo of Etihad.

Year: 2018
Capacity: 5 MWp

An aerial view of solar panels installed on the rooftops of residential buildings.

Al-Wasl Residential Properties

A logo of Al-Wasl properties.

Five years guaranteed savings
energy performance contract

Smart Automation Energy

A logo of Smart Automation Energy.

A logo of Etihad.

Year: 2018
Capacity: 3.2 MWp

An aerial view of solar panels installed on the rooftop of a commercial building.

Aramex Building

A logo of Aramex.

Direct ownership- ARAMEX

A logo of Aramex.

IMG Solar FZE

A logo of IMG Solar FZE, part of Izzat Marji Group.

Year 2019
Capacity: 1MWp

An aerial view of solar panels installed on the rooftops of factory buildings.

Al Barakah Dates Factory

A logo of Al Barakah Dates.

20 years lease with

A logo of Enviromena Power Systems.

Enviromena Power Systems

A logo of Enviromena Power Systems.

Year 2017
Capacity: 1.1 MWp

An aerial view of solar panels installed on the rooftop of a commercial building.

RSA Global

A logo of RSA Talke.

15 year lease agreement with

A logo of Siraj Power.

SirajPower

A logo of Siraj Power.

Source: Data from Taqati Annual Report 2018 and other sources. Author compiled.

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