|27 September, 2018

Etihad ESCO organize Dubai Retrofit & Developers Awareness Program to drive adoption of retrofits  

Workshop discusses ways to overcome challenges faced by building retrofit projects

Etihad ESCO organize Dubai Retrofit Developers Awareness Program to drive adoption of retrofits  

Dubai: As part of their collective efforts to make Dubai’s built environment a leading example of energy efficiency for the region and the world, Etihad Energy Service Company (Etihad ESCO) – the Super ESCO in the Emirates of Dubai, today organized a workshop ‘Dubai Retrofit and Developers Awareness Program,’ to raise awareness on the rising relevance of energy efficiency and to discuss ways to address challenges, including financing, that impede the widespread adoption of building retrofits.

The event was successful in helping the attendees gain a better understanding of retrofitting as a tool to achieve energy efficiency, along with the benefits of energy audits and retrofitting projects. Addressing the challenges related to financing, the session deliberated easy financing solutions for retrofit and solar projects that are available for developers.

The building sector currently accounts for a large share of emissions and is responsible for 60 to 70 percent of UAE’s electricity consumption. Achieving 30% by 2030 commitments will require the active participation and cooperation of the developers in the region. Highlighting this, the forum underscored the importance of developers and energy service companies working together right from the inception of the building projects; the role of financing process in the creation of mutually beneficial partnerships; and the need to retrofit existing buildings in order to reduce emissions from the buildings sector.

Ali Al Jassim, CEO, Etihad ESCO, highlighted that almost eight per cent of electricity consumption savings and over four per cent of water consumption savings were achieved in 2017, compared to normal consumption levels. This corresponds respectively to 3.3 TWh per year of electricity saved, and to 4.9 billion Imperial Gallons per year of desalinated water saved. Furthermore, representatives of Etihad ESCO’s clients presented successful retrofit case studies implemented by the company at their facilities. The speakers included Mr. Faisal Ali Rasid from Supreme Council of Energy, Mr. Armando from DEWA, Mr. Siddiqui Kaleem from Dubai Airports, Mr. Suhas Inamdar from Al Wasl, and Mr. Mohammad Najjar from DIFC.

In addition, the workshop discussed the importance of solar in enhancing energy efficiency of buildings. It emphasized that the ideal and most efficient phase to incorporate solar is during construction of the building. Etihad ESCO also presented successful solar case studies from the region and drew attention to the potential of solar rooftops and car park.

As Etihad ESCO continues to work towards stimulating the building retrofit market that should generate around 800 million worth of energy savings on the utility bill of end users by 2030 the forum discussed the role of measurement and verification (M&V) as an essential tool for effective monitoring of energy savings. Various sustainability services provided by Etihad ESCO were also explained.

Al Jassim said: “The building sector holds huge potential in the achievement of energy efficiency and in lessening the impact of climate change. A range of structural and architectural changes can be incorporated at the designing stage itself to make a huge difference, although, the awareness levels about these possibilities remain quite low. The workshop was successful in engaging developers and other stakeholders in meaningful discussions, including financial challenges that pose hindrance to the adoption of these measures.”

TAQATI elaborated on the significance of capacity building and training in improving the delivery of energy efficiency projects. Representatives of a diverse group of organizations attended the workshop, including Emaar properties, Union Properties, Azizi Developments, Diamond Developers, Omniyat, Al Wasl Properties, Dubai Investment and Meydan Group.

As Dubai remains committed to the goal of becoming one of the most energy efficient cities in the world, Etihad ESCO and TAQATI continue to support government’s efforts by organizing workshops and training programs aimed at creating awareness amongst developers and other stakeholders. Such initiatives play a significant role in determining the success of the Dubai DSM Strategy 2030, which aims to reduce the demand for electricity and water by 30 per cent by 2030.

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