The UAE has become the world’s first country to produce aluminium using solar power.
Under an agreement struck between the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) on Monday, January 18, DEWA will supply EGA’s smelter with solar power from the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, located in Dubai.
The solar park has a current installed capacity of 1,013 megawatts using photovoltaic solar panels.
DEWA is implementing an additional 1,850 megawatts of projects using solar panels and Concentrated Solar Power (CSP). Eventually, its capacity will reach 5,000MW by 2030.
DEWA will supply EGA’s smelter with 560,000 megawatt hours of solar power annually from the facility, sufficient to produce 40,000 tonnes of aluminium in the first year itself.
EGA will in turn supply this solar-powered aluminium to global customers under the new product name CelestiAL.
The fourth phase of the solar park will, upon its completion, have the largest energy storage capacity in the world of 15 hours. It will be operational in stages starting from Q3 2021, and will provide clean energy for 320,000 residences, and will reduce 1.6 million tonnes of carbon emissions a year.
EGA’s sourcing of solar power from Dubai’s electricity grid will be tracked and traced through the use of the International Renewable Energy Certification System, ensuring that the energy used to produce EGA’s CelestiAL solar aluminium has been sourced from the sun.
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, managing director and CEO of DEWA and vice chairman of EGA said that the ability to produce aluminum using solar power will help achieve the goals of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 in diversifying energy sources and deriving 75 per cent of Dubai’s energy production capacity from clean energy sources by 2050. “The new achievement contributes to supporting our efforts in reducing carbon emissions through the Dubai Carbon Abatement Strategy. Dubai reduced carbon emissions by 22 per cent in 2019 compared to business as usual. Results achieved exceeded the targets set in the Dubai Carbon Abatement Strategy, which aims to reduce carbon emissions by 16 per cent by 2021″.
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