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Looking ahead to WFES 2014

Naji El Haddad reveals his plans for World Future Energy Summit 2014.

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Naji El Hadded, show director, World Future Energy Summit (WFES).
Naji El Hadded, show director, World Future Energy Summit (WFES).

Naji El Hadded is show director of World Future Energy Summit (WFES). WFES has evolved into one of the foremost events for the renewable energy industry.

What do exhibitors and attendees gain from the World Future Energy Summit?
World Future Energy Summit (WFES), centerpiece of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, plays a vital role in bringing together world leaders and policymakers from business and technology to help find solutions to the increasing global demand for energy. For delegates to the conference programme, WFES provides a thought-leadership, knowledge-sharing and vibrant discussion about future energy, energy-efficiency and clean technologies, and aims to stimulate debate about the challenges and possible solutions within the industry. Exhibitors gain exposure to over 25,000 attendees, including engineers, architects, consultants, investors and other industry experts to showcase their latest technologies, solutions and projects. They also have the chance to network to develop new business opportunities and partnerships.

Tell us more about EcoWASTE and why it's been added to the event.
EcoWASTE has been added to WFES 2014 to showcase the emerging technologies in the waste management and recycling sector. Waste-to-energy is becoming a viable and practical option as a renewable energy source, particularly in the Gulf region, where it is estimated that GCC countries generate 120 million tons of solid waste per year. This waste then can be converted into useable energy to support the solar and wind industries and become a vital part of the regional energy mix.

EcoWASTE 2014, hosted by Masdar and in partnership with Center of Waste Management in Abu Dhabi (CWM), will cover the entire solid waste management services sector, bringing together waste management experts from the public and private sectors to exchange know-how and conduct business. It will provide exhibitors with unrivalled opportunities to network, exchange best practices, unveil new projects and source cutting-edge technologies and solutions.

In addition to EcoWASTE, what else will be new at next year's event?
The expansion of the Sustainable Living Area as part of the WFES 2014 exhibition is something that we are very excited about. At WFES 2013 earlier this year, we launched the Estidama-approved actual size home in the Sustainable Living Area which proved very popular. The energy-efficient home is returning in 2014 and we are building on this adding an Eco-hotel, which will demonstrate the latest energy-efficiency features in a real-size hotel suite. This Sustainable Living Area will provide a glimpse into future of urban environments, and we are look forward to unveiling this at WFES 2014.

How well is the region meeting the challenges that are discussed every year at WFES?
Both Abu Dhabi and Dubai have set aspirational and achievable targets for the use of renewable sources in the overall energy mix, and these are commensurate with countries around the world in terms of its population and cycle of economic maturity. For Abu Dhabi, the target is seven per cent by 2020, and Dubai aims to reach five per cent by 2030. The initiatives of Masdar are going a long way to helping Abu Dhabi to achieve its goal, contributing in terms of investment, education (through Masdar Institute) and technical advancements.

As well as the opening of Masdar’s Shams 1 concentrated solar plant earlier this year in Abu Dhabi, the largest such plant in the region, there are many other projects in the pipeline, including the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai, which are keeping the UAE’s targets firmly on track. There are also significant clean energy investments in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan, for example, which is helping the GCC region to emerge as a leader in the adoption of renewable energy.

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