Abu Dhabi, UAE: In line with the UAE’s Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative and global climate change commitments, the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy (DoE) revealed today that it is working on a pipeline of new policies, including a hydrogen policy and regulatory framework, to accelerate a carbon neutral future for the people of Abu Dhabi, and the UAE.

Speaking on a high-profile ministerial panel ‘Collaborative policy blueprints to enable decarbonisation and inclusive energy security’ on the opening day of Gastech 2022 in Milan, Italy, the DoE Chairman, His Excellency Eng. Awaidha Murshed Ali Al Marar, shared details of the Abu Dhabi 2035 integrated energy framework and the new hydrogen policy that would help drive the country’s energy transition. The Emirate is playing a key role in driving the national net zero ambitions.

The DoE’s new hydrogen strategic framework will set out the policies, regulations, standards, and certifications for the hydrogen industry to become globally competitive. This new framework aims to fast track the UAE’s national hydrogen strategy and place the Abu Dhabi at the global forefront of countries producing low carbon hydrogen. “We are very excited about hydrogen as a new energy vector in our energy transition plans and to develop Abu Dhabi as a low-carbon hydrogen industrial hub,” said H.E. Al Marar, who is leading a DoE delegation at Gastech, globally recognised as the most important energy conversation of the year for the gas, liquified natural gas, hydrogen, utilities, and low-carbon solutions industries.

The new hydrogen framework is expected to position Abu Dhabi as a global leader of low-carbon hydrogen production, encourage new local industries and jobs, offer growth for existing firms, develop new skill sets, facilitate further research, and stimulate more foreign direct investment in the energy sector.

His Excellency further emphasised that the transition to a decarbonised economy could only be achieved through broader collaboration and significant investment in clean energy technologies. Abu Dhabi has been investing in decarbonization for the past 15 years, with more than US$40 billion gone towards financing clean energy projects in the sector. The UAE has earmarked a sizeable investment to increase the contribution of clean energy (such as renewables, battery storage, and nuclear) in the total energy mix over the next few years.

“Abu Dhabi has already made progress in reducing its carbon footprint by investing in a power generation mix that includes nuclear, solar, and decoupling power and water production,” said H.E Al Marar. “We have also initiated, through several policies and regulations, projects that are starting to drive energy efficiency for Abu Dhabi residents and businesses.”

However, with natural gas and petroleum still accounting for most of the energy currently consumed, H.E Al Marar highlighted that much of the energy transition to a carbon-neutral future would depend on new clean and renewable energy sources, advancement of emission-reducing technologies, reducing energy costs, and investment in infrastructure, while ensuring socioeconomic and environmental benefits.

As such, the DoE, as a policymaker and regulator, is collaborating and partnering with other government entities and key commercial players to model several pathways towards net zero. “The transition away from carbon-based energy will be highly dynamic, but our projections and scenarios provide long-term visibility and policy signalling to guide the investment decisions needed to deliver on a carbon neutral future for the emirate of Abu Dhabi, and the UAE,” added H.E. Al Marar.

About Abu Dhabi Department of Energy

Abu Dhabi Department of Energy was established in 2018 with a vision of powering Abu Dhabi’s economy, sustaining its people, and protecting the environment. It enacts and develops policies, regulations, and strategies to support the emirate’s energy transition, develop its people capabilities, and create an efficient energy system. It protects consumers and minimises the sector’s environmental impact while ensuring the availability of dependable, safe, and affordable energy and related services by harnessing the latest technology.

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