IPCC Report Affirms a Major Role for Renewable Energy in a Diversified Energy Mix


Potential of Renewable Energy Outlined in Report by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change                                                             Arabic Version
Abu Dhabi, 9 May 2011 – Renewable energy sources have a major role to play in diversified, low-carbon energy systems, according to a report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This is a powerful support for the UAE’s aggressive push into renewable energy technologies, announced Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, UAE Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change and Chief Executive of Masdar at a press conference announcing the release of the report on Monday.

“As well as having a large potential to mitigate climate change, Renewable Energy can provide wider benefits. Renewable Energy can contribute to social and economic development, energy access, energy security, and reduce negative impacts on the environment and health.” stated the report.

“The report makes clear that the energy mix chosen will vary from country to country, but renewable energy has a potentially huge role to play in that energy mix and that global technical potential for renewable energy, as a whole, is unlimited,” said Dr. Al Jaber. “This diversified approach is consistent with the strategy being followed by the UAE.”

“The inception of the Masdar Initiative, the UAE’s strategic and holistic renewable energy and sustainability initiative was based on our belief that the renewable energy sector would witness an increasing growth. The data compiled by the IPCC reaffirm our beliefs,” he said.

Mr. Adnan Amin, the Director General of IRENA, said: “The IPCC Special report indicates that the growth of the renewable energy sector is both imminent and progressive – it clearly indicates that renewable energy will have a major role to play in the future energy mix of the world."

The report reviews 164 scenarios for the growth of new renewable energy sources, excluding traditional biomass. These foresee renewable energy growing by between 3 and 20 times in scale by the middle of this century.

Meanwhile despite global financial challenges, renewable energy capacity grew in 2009—wind by over 30 percent; hydropower by three percent; grid-connected photovoltaics by over 50 percent; geothermal by 4 percent; solar water/heating by over 20 percent and ethanol and biodiesel production rose by 10 percent and 9 percent respectively.

According to the report, estimates for the investment needed during this decade alone range from 1.3 to 5.1 trillion dollars. “These projections show the huge scale of the opportunity to invest, creating new jobs, economic growth and cleaner energy systems,” said Dr. Al Jaber

Moreover close to 80 percent of the world’s energy supply could be met by renewables by mid-century if backed by the right enabling public policies.

Dr. Al Jaber also highlighted the possible role that the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology could take in filling the gap of “identifying more information on managing energy systems and integrating very high levels of renewable energy.

“I hope that UAE institutions including the Masdar Institute will be able to play a role in filling this gap in the future,” he said. “There is scope here for innovation, investment and the creation of new jobs and growth,” he said.

Following the release of the report, members of the IPCC and the Masdar Institute held a special panel on Renewable Energy technology and policies to discuss further means of collaboration.

In closing, Dr. Sultan thanked the Chair, Co-authors and authors of the report, adding “The strength of this report, in my view, rests in the IPCC’s core methods – this is a definitive review of the scientific literature on renewable energy.