Since its establishment on 1 January, 1992, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) is moving steadily to achieve the visionary directives of the Founding Fathers and the wise leadership vision to promote comprehensive and sustainable development in the UAE, which thrived over the past 50 years. This was evident in several achievements and gains that herald 50 coming years of more prosperity WAM states.
DEWA has made significant achievements that made it one of the best utilities worldwide providing its services for more than a million customers in Dubai. DEWA has world-class infrastructure and its assets reached AED200 billion with investments over AED86 billion in five years to meet the growing electricity and water demand. This is through a clear strategy and roadmap to turn Dubai into a hub for excellence in new and essential technologies to meet the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and the Dubai Net Zero Emissions Strategy 2050 to provide 100% of the energy production capacity from clean energy sources by 2050.
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA, said that DEWA works to provide a state-of-the-art infrastructure according to the highest pioneering international standards, as well as raise the capacity and efficiency of power plants, transmission networks and distribution networks to provide electricity and water services. This is according to the highest availability, efficiency, sustainability and reliability standards to meet the growing demand for energy and water as well as Dubai’s ambitious urban and economic plans.
“As part of its vision to become a globally leading sustainable innovative corporation, DEWA strives to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030, promoting sustainability with its social, economic, and environmental aspects. This is in accordance with the directives of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE; His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai; and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to make the UAE the world’s leading nation by its Centennial in 2071. Thanks to wise leadership support, DEWA’s installed capacity has reached 13,200 MW of electricity and 490 MIGD of water. Clean energy share has reached 10% of Dubai’s energy mix, which is a significant success for the Emirate as it has surpassed the target of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 to provide 7% of Dubai’s total power capacity from clean energy sources by 2020. Dubai has also surpassed the target of the Dubai Carbon Abatement Strategy, two years ahead. Carbon emissions in Dubai dropped by 22% in 2019, surpassing the target of reducing 16% of emissions by 2021. Dubai has become a model for clean and renewable energy, sustainability, green economy, carbon emissions reduction, and finding sustainable solutions to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change,” said Al Tayer.
“DEWA has reached the highest standards in global competitiveness indicators, which includes raising the fuel efficiency of the generation units to about 90%, competing with the highest international benchmarks, and increased production efficiency by 33.41% between 2006 and 2020. The availability and reliability of power plants in summer to 99.66% and 99.98% respectively, which is among the highest percentages worldwide. DEWA surpassed prominent European and American companies in reducing its power transmission and distribution network losses to 3.3%, compared to 6-7% in Europe and the USA. DEWA has reduced its customer minutes lost to 1.66 minutes, compared with 15 minutes recorded by leading utilities in the European Union. DEWA’s water network losses have decreased to 5.1%, compared to 15% in North America,” added Al Tayer.
DEWA’s milestones over the past 29 years include: The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park is the largest single-site solar park in the world using the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model. The current capacity of the solar park’s projects has reached 1,013MW using photovoltaic solar panels. DEWA has projects with a capacity of 1,850 MW underway using photovoltaic solar panels and Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) in addition to other phases to reach 5,000MW by 2030. DEWA seeks to set two new records for the tallest solar tower in the world at 262.44 meters and the largest 700-megawatt Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plant in the fourth phase of the Solar Park. The Solar Park hosts the Innovation Centre which is a global platform for renewable and clean energy. It shapes the future of sustainable energy worldwide. It also includes the R&D Centre which supports DEWA’s efforts to anticipate the future, develop long-term proactive plans to keep pace with the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and innovate disruptive technologies to provide world-class services that enhance the quality of life in Dubai. DEWA has achieved the Guinness World Records title for the first 3D-printed laboratory in the world. The record was awarded for DEWA’s Robotics & Drone laboratory, housed within the (R&D) Centre.
DEWA’s Space-D Programme DEWA’s Space-D program seeks to enhance operational efficiency and effectiveness and promote preventive maintenance of electricity and water networks, including planning, production, transmission and distribution. The programme will also contribute to enhancing flexibility and agility in monitoring and managing electricity and water networks, as well as the accurate and rapid assessment of the impact of weather and climate change on energy supplies and energy infrastructure including water desalination. It will also provide a backup support system for the network through satellite communications. The performance and efficiency of solar photovoltaic panels at the Solar Park will be monitored by cameras through the main satellite to study the effect of climatic conditions on the energy infrastructure and supply. The project includes satellites that support the main satellite, created by Emiratis at the R&D Centre. The system features a ground station at the solar park as well as IoT and AI technologies to support ground communication transmission stations in electricity and water networks.
Green Hydrogen DEWA launched the Green Hydrogen project, the first of its kind in the Middle East and North Africa to produce hydrogen using solar power at the Solar Park. The project was designed and built to accommodate future applications and testing facilities for the different uses of hydrogen including transportation and industrial uses. The pioneering project was implemented in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai and Siemens.
Developmental projects in Hatta DEWA strives to implement pioneering and innovative projects to generate electricity using stored water with a capacity of 250 MW in Hatta. The hydroelectric power station in Hatta is the first of its kind in the Arabian Gulf with a storage capacity of 1,500 megawatt hours (MWH) and a life span of 80 years. It also has investments up to AED 1.421 billion. DEWA currently studies the possibility to generate electricity from wind energy in Hatta. It has allocated a site for a wind farm with a total capacity of 28 MW.
To promote Hatta’s position as one of the most prominent tourist attractions across Dubai, DEWA is implementing ‘Dubai Summit’ which includes the construction of a 5.4-kilometre cable car to transport tourists to the summit of Um Al Nesoor. At 1,300 meters above sea level, it is the highest natural summit in Dubai. It is also implementing ‘Hatta Sustainable Waterfalls’ project which will use the slope of the upper dam to create a natural waterfall. A waterway will be built along the parking area below the dam. The area will be developed to create recreational spaces and restaurants.
Jebel Ali Power Plant and Desalination Complex DEWA’s Jebel Ali Power and Desalination Complex is one of the key pillars to provide Dubai with high-quality, efficient and reliable electricity and water services. The Complex has been confirmed by Guinness World Records as the largest single-site natural gas power generation facility in the world at a capacity of 9,547 MW. The Complex comprises two main plants for power generation and water desalination. Plant -1 with a production capacity of 2,761 MW consists of stations D, E, and G. Plant-2 with a production capacity of 6,786 MW consists of stations K, L, and M.
Key DEWA subsidiaries Besides its key function to provide electricity and water services, DEWA has several other relevant commercial activities. Among its key subsidiaries: Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation (Empower); Etihad Energy Services Co (Etihad ESCO); Digital DEWA; Data Hub Integrated Solutions (Moro); Jumeriah Energy International; Shuaa Energy 1; Shuaa Energy 2; Hassyan Energy Company; Noor Energy 1; Shuaa Energy 3; Green Fund investments; and Forward Ventures.
Digital DEWA DEWA launched Digital DEWA, as its digital arm, as part of the Dubai 10X initiative to develop the Government of Dubai and make it 10 years ahead of other cities. Through this initiative, DEWA aims to rework and disrupt the entire business of a utility and become the first digital utility in the world with autonomous systems for renewable energy storage and control with the expansion of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and digital services. Digital DEWA includes Moro Hub; and four other companies established recently: DigitalX; and InfraX.
Supporting Expo 2020 Dubai DEWA’s contribution to Expo 2020 Dubai is two-fold. It is the Official Sustainable Energy Partner, and it has its own pavilion at the event. DEWA allocated AED 4.26 billion to support electricity and water infrastructure of the event using the latest smart systems as well as providing Expo 2020 Dubai with clean energy from the Solar Park. DEWA also installed 19 EV green charger stations at different event sites.
WETEX and DSS The Water, Energy, Technology and Environment Exhibition (WETEX) and Dubai Solar Show is the largest exhibition of its kind in the region and one of the most prominent international exhibitions in water, energy, electricity, environment, oil, gas, renewable energy, and environmental sustainability. WETEX has outlined several strategic objectives and achieved them. Over the past 22 years, it has contributed to promoting sustainable development and building a green economy in the UAE. It has become an integrated platform for organizations in these sectors to promote their products, services, and innovative technologies in addition to meeting stakeholders from around the world. The exhibition enables creating partnerships and deals, learning about the latest technologies, meeting experts, specialists and solution providers, investors, decision-makers from the public and private sectors. WETEX and DSS 2021 witnessed the participation of over 1,200 companies from 55 countries, 61 sponsors, and 10 country pavilions. The exhibition attracted 45,506 visitors from around the world. DEWA organized 56 seminars and panel discussions at the exhibition, with the participation of experts and specialists from around the world.
World Green Economy Summit The World Green Economy Summit (WGES), organised by DEWA and the World Green Economy Organisation (WGEO) in collaboration with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. WGES is an important global platform that enhances partnerships among key decision-makers, and collaboration between regional and international organisations in the public and private sectors, for a shift towards a green economy. The WGES is a strategic platform that supports international cooperation in countering global challenges, enhancing sustainable development, and investing in a green economy.
Since its inception in 2014, the summit has made great progress and many achievements, notably due to increased cooperation between decision-makers from the public and private sectors. Each year, WGES wraps up by issuing Dubai Declaration, which includes the participants’ recommendations, the summit conclusions as well as its milestones and activities.
World Green Economy Organization (WGEO) Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the World Green Economy Organisation in collaboration with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in October 2016 during the World Green Economy Summit in Dubai, to enhance the transition to a green economy and the dissemination of green economy projects at a global level, as well as support countries and organizations seeking to achieve their strategies and green plans. The World Green Economy Organisation and the UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) will host the ‘MENA Climate Week 2022’, in collaboration with the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), UN Climate Change, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the World Bank Group. The UAE will be hosting this first-of-its-kind event in the Middle East and North Africa from 2 to March 3, 2022, on the sidelines of Expo 2020 Dubai. The event will highlight the urgency of addressing climate change and current global development challenges.
Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME) DEWA organised the first and second SDME for university students to design and build solar-powered homes for the first time in the MEA region with total prizes of more than AED 20 million. The SDME was held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council. DEWA organized the SDME as part of a partnership with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE), and the US Department of Energy. The SDME aims to encourage university students to design, build and operate smart and sustainable solar-powered homes that are highly efficiency in terms of cost and energy consumption while protecting the environment and taking into consideration the region’s climate conditions.
Digital Transformation Smart adoption of DEWA’s services has reached 98.92% in the third quarter of 2021. DEWA also received the 100% Paperless stamp from Smart Dubai in recognition of its efforts to turn all its operations and services into paperless ones. DEWA provides all its services through the website and smart app. DEWA completed the digital integration with more than 30 entities and the number of smart transactions completed from 2017 until the end of September 2021 has reached 41 million transactions.
Over the past years, DEWA has made several achievements that placed it as one of the most distinguished utilities in the world. These achievements include: More than 348 awards: DEWA has won 348 awards (62 local, 63 regional, and 223 international) from 2015 and until the first half of this year.
Shams Dubai: The Shams Dubai initiative launched by Smart Dubai aims to make Dubai the smartest and happiest city globally. The initiative aims to encourage building owners to install solar photovoltaic rooftop energy systems and connect them to DEWA’s grid to cover their energy needs. As of mid-November 2021, DEWA has connected 6880 photovoltaic (PV) installations on the roofs of residential, commercial and industrial buildings in Dubai, with a total capacity of 365MW.
Smart Grid: DEWA’s smart grid is a cornerstone of its strategy to develop an advanced infrastructure that supports the Smart Dubai initiative to make Dubai the smartest and happiest city in the world. DEWA has installed more than two million smart electricity and water meters in Dubai. This enhances efficiency and conservation in addition to enabling customers to monitor their consumption anytime and anywhere.
Green Charger: The Green Charger initiative to build an electric vehicle infrastructure promotes the sustainable transport system in the Emirate as an integral part of smart cities. DEWA has installed more than 320 EV green charger stations across Dubai to encourage the public to use EVs.
Best percentages in health and safety: DEWA places the culture of health and safety at the top of its priorities and strives to fully abide by health and safety standards which exceeded 96% of zero environmental waste, which is the highest percentage in this area. DEWA’s efforts have been crowned with several globally leading achievements.
Conservation: DEWA’s programs and initiatives between 2011 and 2020 have achieved cumulative savings within target groups amounting to 2.44 TWh of electricity and 6.7 billion gallons of water, equivalent to saving AED 1.35 billion, and reduction of 1.22 million tons of CO2 emissions.