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Dubai ruler launches World Happiness Council

20 March 2017

The project reflects a new era in the excellence and leadership of the UAE, as it increases the share of clean and renewable energy.

The project is the "largest and first solar power project of its kind in the region", he said.

The 200 megawatt plant sprawls over 4.5 square kilometres (1.73 square miles) of desert and includes some 2.3 million photovoltaic panels.

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Habbai was chosen by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum to be chairman of the investment conglomerate, which has a portfolio of assets worth $35 billion across 20 countries, according to a statement on the Dubai ruler's website. The UAE puts sustainability and diversification of energy sources at the forefront of its priorities, based on a forward-looking vision that shapes the future, focuses on the happiness of people, and balances the need for development with the preservation of our environment.

When completed, the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park will be the largest single-site solar energy project in the world, with a planned total production capacity of 1,000MW by 2020 and 5,000MW by 2030. The developer has also launched DXB Entertainments, a subsidiary that has built a theme park and water park complex on the outskirts of the city, which aims to attract additional tourists to Dubai.

Dubai on Monday completed a solar plant big enough to power 50,000 homes as part of a plan to generate three-quarters of its energy from renewables by 2050. The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park is one of the major projects that DEWA implements to achieve this promising strategy.

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Al Tayer noted that Dubai will exceed its goals by generating 10 per cent of its total power from clean energy by 2020, thanks to its initiative Shams Dubai - solar panel installation on rooftops - that is expected to save about 300MW in the next three years.

DEWA said in December the second phase of the project had set a world record for cheap solar energy, at 5.6 USA cents (5.2 euro cents) per kilowatt hour. This demonstrates the promising future of clean energy, ' said Al Tayer. It will reduce over 6.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually.

"It means we were able to produce energy not related to fuel and with decrease in unit cost", he said.

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Dubai ruler launches World Happiness Council