ABU DHABI: Abu Dhabi’s Building Retrofit Programme to improve electricity and water efficiency of the existing buildings across the emirate will help save up to 40 percent of power consumption in some buildings, a senior executive of Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) told the Emirates News Agency (WAM).

"In some of the projects we are working on right now, we believe that after we finish our retrofitting programme, we can save 20 to 40 percent of electricity consumption, and around 10 percent water consumption in some of the buildings. It's a win-win to the owner of these buildings and to us," said Omar Abdulla Alhashmi, Executive Director of Transmission and Distribution at TAQA Group.

In an exclusive interview with WAM on the sidelines of the World Utilities Congress 2022 that kicked off on Monday, 9th May, at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), he said that Abu Dhabi Energy Services (ADES), a subsidiary company established by Taqa in 2020, is working very hard to utilise the opportunity to reduce utility consumption of the existing buildings. ADES provides energy-efficient solutions and tools to government and private sectors in the Emirate, which help them reduce the energy and water consumption of their facilities.

The Building Retrofit Programme is one of the nine programmes under the Abu Dhabi Demand Side Management and Energy Rationalisation Strategy 2030 to reduce overall electricity consumption by 22 percent and water consumption by 32 percent in the emirate by 2030.

The Abu Dhabi Department of Energy (DoE) completed the first pilot project as part of the Building Retrofit Programme with the aim of raising energy efficiency on eight government buildings in the emirate in early 2020. The DoE signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with five Abu Dhabi Government entities in January 2022 to implement the Building Retrofit Programme on 39 buildings of those entities. The DoE will finance the Programme at government facilities, while the project implementation will be carried out by ADES.

ADES has also signed MoU with many entities in Abu Dhabi to implement the programme. "Basically, we go and establish a contract with the building owners, do an audit on the building and then we say, for example, we believe that your building has a potential to save 'X' amount of power and water, and we make a contractual agreement to carry out the retrofit, " Alhashmi explained.

Moreover, Taqa’s advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) project will help customers of its utilities access detailed automatic readings of both their current and historical energy usage, allowing them to control their consumption. The project in partnership with Etisalat is progressing fast and will be completed within two years as scheduled, Alhashmi said.

Taqa is a fully integrated utility with three different business lines such as generation, transmission and distribution, and oil and gas, he explained. In the generation part, the company not only owns a part of the generation capacity in the UAE, but also in a number of countries around the world in Asia, Africa, and North America. When it comes to transmission and distribution, its main assets are within the UAE, and Abu Dhabi Distribution Company (ADDC), Al Ain Distribution Company (AADC), and Abu Dhabi Transmission and Despatch Company (TRANSCO) are that portfolio companies of Taqa, he said.

Alhashmi talked about Taqa’s initiatives in digitalisation and other major areas at the World Utilities Congress 2022 that runs until Wednesday, 11th May.

The congress is focussing on proactive measures for decarbonisation, curbing carbon emissions, and attracting the long-term capital investment needed for a sustainable future. The participants are discussing the trends, technologies and innovations that affect future demand levels for water supplies and energy sources worldwide.

Held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed, Member of Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office, and hosted by TAQA, the global exhibition also brings together more than 10,000 global utility professionals, 200 speakers, over 1,000 representatives of participating parties from across the globe.

WAM/Binsal AbdulKader/Khoder Nashar/Tariq alfaham