The UAE has said the commercial case for investing in renewable energy has "never been stronger".
Sultan Al Jaber, the UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and the country's climate envoy, said recent data from IRENA confirmed that 2020 saw the largest increase in installed renewable capacity in the history of the sector, with 260 GW added, despite the economic headwinds caused by the global pandemic.
“Progressive climate action is not only necessary, it can also be a powerful economic driver, and if we do it right, it can actually put the world on a new low carbon/high growth development trajectory. So, we need to start looking at the climate challenge as an opportunity,” Al Jaber, who is also the head of the state-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Co, said.
Al Jaber was speaking in a virtual interview with Frederick Kempe, president and chief executive of Washington DC-based think tank, the Atlantic Council.
He also said the UAE would look to invest in renewable and clean tech investments that make commercial sense.
Al Jaber noted that the country is investing in new, zero-carbon fuels such as hydrogen. Although hydrogen currently has a limited market, it could form a sizeable segment of the energy system in the next 20 years, when the UAE will have the capacity to become a significant supplier of both blue and green hydrogen.
Adnoc recently formed an alliance with other major state-backed entities Mubadala and ADQ to explore the potential of low-carbon blue and green hydrogen.
(Writing by Brinda Darasha; editing by Seban Scaria)
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