Law to rationalise energy sources in pipeline, says Energy Minister

WAM DUBAI, 19th April, 2014 (WAM)–Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy has unveiled a new draft ‘Rationalisation Law”, being prepared in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment and Water ahead of referring it to the Cabinet this year for endorsement.

The law will be endorsed as a balanced policy to help a consumer understands his important role in preserving of energy sources and also helps the government to study its future options, as well as continue in ‘awareness initiatives’ with all bodies and institutions in a campaign to reduce energy and water consumption in conjunction with the Federal Water and Electricity Authority that targets housewives, worshippers. schools and major industrial facilities.

In an exclusive interview with Emirati anchor, Khadijah Al Marzouqi during the ”Emirates Tonight” Programme on Dubai Radio, Energy Minister said, ” The general features of the country’s general strategy in the field of energy, focuses on resources and future challenges, as well as rationalisation and consumption patterns, in addition to the focus on the role of technology, green economy and buildings on the preservation of environment.” He referred to the electricity consumption, tariff, and the government subsidy, internal and external investment, future plans, alternative energy and shale oil and others, emphasising that the energy and natural gas sector is deemed vital since the inception of the UAE, whose government-led by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and the Rulers of the Emirates, took interest in the sector to ensure decent life for the citizen.

Al Mazrouei pointed out the importance of diversifying energy sources and use of fossil gas at average of 70 per cent to 75 per cent of energy consumption and 25 per cent of nuclear energy, five percent of renewable energy by 2020, expecting that the increase in energy sources through liquefied gas would be local and imported gas, while the third source will be natural liquefied gas, being the most expensive among the three sources. The liquefied gas is being imported through Jebel Ali Port at a capacity of three million tonnes annually.

He added that work is underway to establish a new port in Fujairah at a threefold capacity of energy compared to that of Dubai with additional capacity of nine million tonnes of liquefied gas from Fujairah Port. The tenders will be invited to this year.

Al Mazrouei said that there are no signs of delay to 2017 date slated for the operation of the first plant, adding that the fourth plant will start operation by 2020. It will contribute 5, 600 MW of electric energy which represents, more or less, 25 percent of the consumption of electricity sector in the country.

Regarding the renewable energy, the minister pointed out that the year 2013 witnessed the launch of two important projects “Shams” which is deemed the biggest of its kind in the field of using the technology in solar energy generating and storage, with a capacity of 100 MW in the Western Region. The second project, ”the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park”, with a capacity of 13 MW, in addition to another project with a capacity of 100 MW in Dubai. He added that in order to contribute to the increase of renewable energy “Masdar” is working is studying multiple projects, whether in Abu Dhabi or Al Ain.

Answering a question on the impact of extraction of shale oil on the international prices, the minister denied this hypothesis on the ground, citing that there three major markets such as the gas heading to Asia, whose prices are dubbed the highest prices in the world at a cost of $14-16 cubic feet, while gas coming to Europe ranges between $10 -11and there is still a kind of uncertainty about the quantities of the exported shale gas in the US and Canada , expecting that there will be an increase in the amount of gas flow in the market after 2020 which would reduce the rise of prices. Experts anticipate that the average of price will be between $ 11 to 12 and the third market is American market, whose prices ranges from between $5- 3.5.

He also commented on the difference between oil and gas usage and their importance in power generation, energy minister said :” When oil prices were cheap, it was an option for old stations but in the light of the environmental effects and high prices, ”Diesel has become the last choice for power generation.” Al Mazrouei said there are doubts about the exports of quantities of shale gas in US and Canada, expecting that there will quantities of gas flow to the market after 2020, hence, reducing hike of prices. Experts expect that average prices will range between $11- 12 for liquefied gas, but not less than $10.

Hazim –MORE– WAM/Majok

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