RIYADH: King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KACARE) is participating in the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) general assembly, representing Saudi Arabia at its seventh session in Abu Dhabi (Jan. 14-15) for widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy. KACARE Vice President Waleed Husain Abu Al-Faraj is heading the Saudi delegation at the session, which coincides with the ongoing Abu Dhabi Week for Sustainability (Jan. 12 to 21).
Saudi Arabia, a member of IRENA since 2012, has been taking part in a number of meetings and its key projects include global sources for renewable energy. KACARE also took part in the World Future Energy Summit, which falls within the activities of Abu Dhabi Week for Sustainability. The IRENA assembly, which designated Italy as president for this session, and the Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Jordan, and Morocco as vice presidents, will feature a number of strategic and programmatic discussions around the central themes of the agency’s work and mandate. These are designed to promote an exchange of information and best practices among members and experts, in support of efforts to increase the uptake of renewable energy, taking advantage of the annual sessions of the assembly as the global cooperation platform in this field. The first day of the session included a discussion on “Enabling the private sector to accelerate renewable energy deployment,” and a ministerial round table discussion “Toward an economy fueled by renewable energy: Innovation for the next stage of the power sector transformation.”
The second day will feature a ministerial round table on “Catalyzing off-grid renewable energy deployment: Toward universal electricity access and the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” Notably, Saudi Arabia, in view of Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program 2020 (NTP 2020), is working on renewable energy, which is generated from natural resources such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides and geothermal heat. KACARE has created a number of initiatives and is working closely with the Ministry of Transportation, the Saudi Electricity Company, the Saudi Wildlife Authority and the Directorate General of Military Survey on an atlas of renewable energy. It is also working on projects in partnership with other sectors such as the General Organization for Saltwater Desalination to process water using solar energy technologies and thermal and wind power.
KACARE is also working with the Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and other key partners toward its renewable energy program as per the adopted work-plan and programs under the National Transformation Program (NTP) 2020. In an initiative toward achieving a sustainable energy mix through a renewable energy program under Vision 2030, KACARE picked bright engineering graduates and sent them to South Korea and France last year for training. IRENA, an international organization to promote the use of renewable energy sources around the world, was founded on Jan. 26, 2009 in the German city of Bonn and its general secretariat is headquartered in Abu Dhabi with 150 countries as members so far, while 27 others are in the process of accession. The agency seeks to become the main driving force in encouraging states to shift toward a more widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy on a global scale.