Installed renewable energy capacity in the United Arab Emirates will increase fourfold by the end of 2025, reaching 9 gigawatts, according to a report from research company Rystad Energy. Solar energy will largely drive this increase, with photovoltaic (PV) projects projected to reach 8.5GW over the next five years.
Total installed capacity for renewables in the UAE amounted to 2.3GW at the end of last year, the Norway-based consultancy said, 91 percent of which came from PV projects. A “robust” project development pipeline will drive growth, especially in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, which will account for 8.2GW of the UAE’s total capacity by the end of 2025.
“Renewable energy seems to be a top priority in the UAE. Despite the COVID-19 shock, the government has provided a reasonable amount of investment to continue ongoing projects. UAE has already attracted big international players in the renewable sector – a healthy sign for future business,” Gaurav Metkar, senior analyst at Rystad Energy, said in a statement.
Dubai currently has more than 1 GW of installed capacity, thanks to all three phases of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (MBR) Solar Park, helping it to exceed its clean energy targets last year. Abu Dhabi’s currently installed capacity stands at 1.3 GW, including the Shams solar CSP project, the report shows.
Among the major projects set to come online in the UAE in the period is the 2GW Al Dhafra Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Independent Power Producer (IPP) project – set to be the largest single-site solar power plant in the world. In December, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) and Masdar, alongside partners EDF and JinkoPower, announced financial close on the project, which will generate enough electricity to power 160,000 homes across the UAE.