Dubai Supreme Council of Energy reviews plans for applying Green Building regulations

DUBAI: H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, chaired the 32nd board meeting of the Supreme Council of Energy, which was attended by Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of the Supreme Council of Energy, and Ahmed Butti Al Muhairabi, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Energy.

The meeting which took place at the Supreme Council’s headquarters was also attended by Abdullah bin Kalban, President and CEO of Emirates Global Aluminium, Abdullah Abdel Kareem, Director General of the Department of Oil Affairs, Waleed Salman, Chairman of the Dubai Carbon Centre of Excellence, Salem bin Mesmar, Assistant Director General for the Environment, Health and Safety Control Sector at Dubai Municipality, Dr. Yousef Al Ali, CEO of Public Transport Agency at the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), and representatives from Dubai Supply Authority.

At the beginning of the meeting, the Council members were briefed on the topics on the agenda which included the implementation of the Demand Side Management Strategy and Dubai’s public transport initiatives.

“To achieve the goals of the National Agenda of the UAE Vision 2021, and support the Green Economy for Sustainable Development initiative launched by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, all efforts are made to achieve the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030, which was set by the Supreme Council of Energy to catalyse sustainable development and make Dubai a global example to follow in energy security and efficiency, and investment in renewable and low-carbon energy. The Green Building initiative is part of the demand-side management initiatives to encourage and motivate the implementation of the approved green buildings’ code in collaboration between DEWA and Dubai Municipality,” said Al Tayer.

Al Tayer noted that the meeting evaluated the work of energy management service companies to enhance the performance of energy contracts in Dubai. This in turn, supports the objectives of the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 to reduce energy demand by 30 per cent by 2030 and enhances energy efficiency of over 30,000 buildings in Dubai, in addition to implementing the Green Building regulations for new buildings.

“The members were briefed on the initiatives and strategic plans of the RTA’s public transport to increase contribution of mass transportation, such as Dubai Metro and Dubai Tram in the traffic system. These means of transport help in improving the lives of people, and save the environment by reducing fuel consumption and Carbon Dioxide emissions,” noted Al Tayer.

Abdullah Rafie, Assistant Director General of the Planning and Engineering Sector at Dubai Municipality, gave a presentation on the progress of implementing the green buildings standards and specifications since it was launched, with statistics for all areas of Dubai. DEWA and Dubai Municipality had set conditions and criteria for buildings in Dubai to adhere to the green buildings’ specifications. These conditions were optional for private buildings from the beginning of 2011 untill the end of 2013, and were mandatory for government buildings. Starting from 2014, they have become mandatory for all new buildings.

“We were briefed on the progress of the Energy Demand Side Strategy, which includes implementing eight programmes by the Council’s agencies, and reduce energy demand by 30% by 2030. It also includes developing a data mechanism that helps to gauge overall electricity and water consumption percentages in commercial, residential, and industrial buildings,” said Al Muhairabi.

“The draft regulatory frameworks for district cooling is being finalised by the Regulation & Supervision Bureau of Electricity and Water in Dubai. This will lead to the cooling districts covering all areas more efficiently and at a lower cost,” he added.

Members were updated on the developments of the 2nd Emirates Energy Awards 2014-2015 under the theme ‘For a Sustainable Future.’ The Council has lately conducted roadshows in the MENA region to promote the award and discover new investment opportunities for the energy, and renewable energy sector in particular.

The Emirates Energy Award (EEA) initiative enhances Dubai’s position as a hub for green economy. By launching the award, the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy raises awareness among individuals and organisations about the importance of the rational consumption of natural resources, preserving the environment and celebrating best practices in this field. Winners will be announced on 22 October 2015, which marks the World Energy Day.