ABU DHABI- UAE companies are using best-in-class technologies, and they have a very good presence in the US market, buying gas, producing petrochemicals and creating job opportunities, said Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Industry.
The minister made the statements in a joint news conference Wednesday with US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry after the 7th Ministerial Meeting of the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum (CSLF) which was held in Abu Dhabi.
"US gas is an opportunity in terms of cost and quality, and this has incentivised petrochemicals companies to move to the US market. We are buying large quantities of gas and we are expanding. Our companies, like Mubadala Investment, have a very good presence in the US market, creating jobs there and this is the collaboration we have stressed today during the forum. We are either bringing the gas here or utilising it there," the minister added.
He underscored the importance of accelerating the private sector’s involvement in the global deployment of carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS).
"The private sector is needed not only to accelerate deployment but also to augment financing in order to drive down the costs of CCUS, identify new commercial models and develop the next generation of CCUS technology. We need exponential growth in this respect." he added, noting that the UAE, US and Saudi Arabia are scaling up CCUS investments.
"We strongly believe that CCUS should be used commercially to replace natural gas as a commodity and therefore, CCUS projects should increase by five times at least over the coming 10 years," said the minister, noting that the CCUS technology is an important contributor to the global clean energy transition.
The minister reiterated UAE's commitment to cut CO2 emissions by 70 percent by 2050.
"Over the past two years, international cooperation on CCUS has continued to expand and some projects have commenced operations, including the world’s first fully-integrated CCUS project in the steel industry in the UAE." He also reiterated the support given by the UAE to collaborative research and development on innovative next-generation CCUS technologies.
"We need our people to be happy and we cannot make them so unless we take care of our CO2 emissions in the future by utilising different technologies, including CCUS." For his part, the US Secretary of Energy said that the UAE is a historical strategic partner for the US, affirming that the UAE-US partnership in areas of energy is progressively growing.
"The US is a reliable LNG exporter and the growing US LNG exports could provide an option for an additional source of gas supply to the region," he said, referring to ongoing negotiations to export US gas to Saudi Arabia.
"In the past there was a belief that the US exporting gas to the region is just a fairytale. Now it is becoming a reality," he noted.
In the meantime, the 7th ministerial meeting of the CSLF , which convened today in Abu Dhabi under the theme "Advancing the Business Case for CCUS," produced a communique where the ministers affirmed that they will work together to ensure CCUS is supported as part of the suite of clean energy technologies along with other low emissions energy solutions.
The meeting was chaired by Minister Al Mazrouei and attended by Khalid Al Falih, Minister of Energy, Mineral Resources in Saudi Arabia, and US Secretary of Energy along with top energy executives from different world countries, including Mexico, Norway, Saudi Arabia, UK, Japan and Canada.
In press statements on the sidelines of the meeting, the Saudi minister underlined the robust partnership between UAE and Saudi companies in areas of oil and petrochemicals, referring in this regard to ongoing negotiations between ADNOC and Aramco to utilise the immense potential at the energy sector in both countries.
The ministers underlined the importance for world governments to consider supporting and investing in CO2 infrastructure onshore and offshore in order to facilitate commercial CCUS deployment and enable other value added opportunities such as Enhanced Oil Recovery.
Underscoring the necessity of engaging the private sector in CCUS projects, the ministers pledged concerted action to work together with the private sector to drive down the costs of CCUS.
They stressed that the CCUS is a key option for deep CO2 emission reduction from process industries such as refineries, the chemical sector ad cement and steel production, and therefore CCUS technology will be an important contributor to the global clean energy transition.
It’s noteworthy that the UAE and US today reaffirmed their shared commitment to a strong bilateral relationship. The commitment was made during the UAE-US Strategic Energy Dialogue held at the UAE’s Ministry of Energy in Abu Dhabi.
The dialogue emphasised US cooperation with the emerging civilian nuclear power sector in the UAE and the commitment of both countries to the development of safe, secure and responsible nuclear power in compliance with international agreements and commitments in coordination with the International Framework for Nuclear Energy Cooperation.
By Hatem Mohamed
© Copyright Emirates News Agency (WAM) 2017.