Steering energy conservation in UAE

, April 27th, 2017

By Francisco Silverio Marques

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has developed over a matter of decades, becoming a booming hub for trade and commerce. With the ongoing fast-paced development of the region, the demand for energy is growing at a rapid pace in comparison to its production capacity, highlighting the need for the implementation of energy conservation measures. It is a fact that has become apparent to the government as demonstrated by the Dubai’s Supreme Council of Energy’s ambitious target to reduce energy and water consumption by 30% by 2030. 

We are all well aware of the detrimental effects wasteful energy habits have on the environment, but it also has an impact on one’s bank account. Day to day costs are only rising, and the need to balance expenses is becoming more important, not just for individuals but organisations as well. What many may fail to realise is that by implementing energy saving measures, companies can make a real difference for the environment, their bottom line and for their end-users.

Energy saving programs are self-sustainable, as companies will have their initial investment returned relatively quickly. However, it is not as simple as just turning off the lights when they are not needed. Without expert guidance, programmes often face hurdles in their implementation which ultimately detracts from the total energy savings. Also, energy saving programmes are not one-size-fits-all solutions. Instead of offering the same packages to every business, facilities management companies must approach each client on an individual basis and take their priorities and facilities in to account.

In order to tackle this challenge, Enova has developed a range of Building Energy Efficiency Services, comprised of energy audits, implementation of energy conservation measures, and operations and monitoring of the facilities, with various levels of guarantees.

Enova created the Energy Saving Centre which allows our engineers to monitor, in real time, the energy consumption of the buildings where we have commitments as well as providing us a platform to advise and implement operational procedures that are best suited for the building. Ultimately, we are measuring utility consumption in real time while operating facilities, allowing us to guarantee results to our clients.

An example of this approach is the Energy Performance Contract we signed with Etihad Energy Services (ESCO) and Economic Zones World (EZW) in November 2015 to bring 30% guaranteed energy savings for Jebel Ali Free Zone’s (JAFZA) labor accommodation over the next 6 years - this translated to $35.9mn in guaranteed savings across the 157 buildings for 42,000 end users. To put some perspective on this, water savings will be the equivalent to a swimming pool the size of a football pitch and the depth of the Burj Khalifa and we are reducing CO2 emissions comparable to planting a forest the size of one third of Paris!

Raising awareness and building a climate of trust in the market is crucial to the development of energy savings sector and this can only be done through demonstration. The energy saving sector will continue to grow, with the development of integrated facilities and energy management services coupled with interactive systems and backed by the UAE Government, as the introduction of excellent initiatives to educate the public on strategic energy savings practices will also expand its benefits to the private sector.

As the whole world takes leaps towards energy conservation, we should not forget that we all need to take action to make a change for the good of our world’s future.

Francisco Silverio Marques is the Business Development and Marketing Director, Enova

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