On Thursday, Dubai-based DP World, announced that construction of the largest solar photovolatic (PV) rooftop project in the Middle East is underway.This comes after the firm commissioned the installation of 88,000 solar rooftop PV panels on its Dubai facilities as part of its continued efforts to reduce its carbon emissions.
The firm said in a company statement that once phase one is completed in 2017, the project will provide enough clean power for 3,000 homes a year.
Adding that 22,000 tonnes of carbon emissions will be saved annually, the equivalent to taking 4,500 cars off the road. The solar panels will provide 40% of the total energy consumption of Jafza, one of the world’s largest free trade zones.
DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “This landmark initiative will have major environmental benefits, and we are pleased to contribute to Dubai’s Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 as well as the UAE vision 2021 for a sustainable environment.
We aim to ensure that everything we do has a long-lasting positive impact on economies and society. By raising awareness of renewable energy, we are helping work towards a carbon neutral future for the UAE."
He added: "This project demonstrates the scale of DP World’s ambition to be a world leader in sustainability and we look forward to sharing the learnings across our business and also with our stakeholders.”
Dubai drives solar developments
The Dubai firm has selected Green Energy Tomorrow, Phanes Group’s rooftop solar specialist, to deliver the solar panels on its warehouses, office buildings and car parks in the Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) and Mina Rashid Port.
"The solar scheme is one of the largest initiatives to be implemented under the recently launched Shams Dubai programme by Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA).
"After phase one of the project is completed in 2017 (totalling 22MW at peak), phases two and three will follow, with further solar installations due in Jafza and Mina Rashid. With 77 marine and inland terminals in over 40 countries, there is significant scope for DP World to implement the learnings from this project across its operations," the firm explained.
Nabil Battal, Director of Global Safety & Environment at DP World, said: “Bringing sustainability into all areas of our work is important to us commercially and to the societies in which we operate. Both the solar scheme and the Carbon Ambassadors Programme, in addition to the global 'Go Green' campaign form part of our continued efforts to reduce our carbon emissions and to produce energy through innovative solutions and green technologies.”
Martin Haupts, CEO of Phanes Group, said: “Establishing solar on every rooftop in the UAE starts with positive action from our industrial economy capitalising on a good regulatory environment, to dramatically reduce both carbon impact and operating costs.
This ground breaking project demonstrates that the UAE’s commitments to a diversified clean energy future are not the sole pursuit of our policy makers, but of our private sector and citizens too – paving the way for a smarter approach to corporate citizenship that is aligned with national objectives and has a clear business case.”