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Friday, 08 December 2023

Sharif Al Olama: AI integration is a major step toward a more energy-secure future

His Excellency Eng Sharif Al Olama, Undersecretary for Energy and Petroleum Affairs at the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, stated that in the age of digital technologies and sustainability challenges, the energy landscape is being revolutionized by the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) that is a major step toward a more energy-secure future.

His Excellency Eng Al Olama made the statement at a high-level session organized by the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (MoEI) as part of its participation at the 28th UN Climate Change Conference (COP28). Titled ‘Empowering Net Zero: Navigating the Path to Sustainable Energy Transition’, the session featured dynamic discussions aimed at steering the global efforts towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly energy landscape.

The session focused on the opportunities and challenges of setting ambitious goals for the energy transition and climate neutrality and explored the policies, technologies, and investments needed to realize these goals.

His Excellency said: “The UAE aims to build a robust clean energy system while reducing emissions from the oil and gas sector by 25% by 2030 through investing in carbon capture, utilization, and storage technologies, whose capacity was increased 10 folds by 2030. We are also developing other technologies, such as renewables, energy efficiency, and hydrogen.

“The UAE has made confident strides in sustaining and diversifying its energy systems, as it invested AED 145 billion in mega solar, wind, hydrogen, nuclear, and hydroelectric projects in the past 15 years. It will invest additional AED 150 – 200 billion by 2030 to meet the increasing demand for energy and sustain economic growth.”

He added: “The UAE made sure to have a regulatory framework in place that is conducive to the energy transition. It updated its Energy Strategy 2050, launched the National Hydrogen Strategy 2050, and issued a federal decree law regarding connecting the distributed renewable units into the grid.”

Session participants emphasized the importance for countries and organizations to scale up their climate action and work together to increase reliance on renewables to ensure a sustainable future powered by innovation and collaboration for next generations.

They highlighted the role of innovation and scientific research in driving clean energy and green technology to balance meeting energy needs with enhancing sustainable development. They further noted that international cooperation and strategic partnerships between government, private sector, and community are crucial tools to expedite the transition to clean energy.

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