Renewable energy jobs and accees report
Establishing renewable energy projects to achieve the UN goal of providing sustainable energy for all by 2030 would create up to 4 million direct jobs in the off-grid sector alone, officials told a press conference here yesterday.
A report titled “Renewable Energy Jobs and Access” was released during the third Council meeting of Abu Dhabi based International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in the capital, Adnan Z Amin, Director General of the agency said.
The decentralised renewable energy solutions would create jobs in rural areas along with providing energy access to remote communities, he said. More than 1.3 billion people do not have access to electricity, 45 per cent of which live in Africa and 50 per cent in Asia.
The UAE will announce more renewable energy projects this year, said Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi, Director of Directorate of Energy and Climate Change at the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs. A 100 megawatt CSP (Concentrated solar power) plant will be operational this year and another 100 megawatt solar energy project will be completed by 2013, he said. The UAE’s already announced target of generating 5 per cent energy from renewable sources may be reviewed and a higher target may be set, Al Yeyoudi said. The country made a small target to begin with, he said.
Another IRENA report on cost analysis of various renewable energy sources says the best hydropower power projects are the most cost competitive generating option available today.
The report also mentions the fall in the cost of solar and wind energy sources.
Solar PV (photovoltaic) costs, for example, have declined dramatically, with crystalline silicon PV module costs falling by over 60 per cent in the last two years to as little as $ 1 (Dh 3.67) per watt. This is competitive with residential electricity tariffs in many countries with good solar resources. Cumulative installed capacity for solar PV grew by over 70 per cent in 2011, and if this capacity growth can be maintained or increased, further cost reductions will occur, said Dolf Gielen, Director, IRENA-Innovation and Technology Centre in Bonn. He said the wind, biomass and geothermal sources also have huge potential.
There was a total of $ 260 billion investment in renewable energy sector worldwide last year, Amin said. “It is the fastest growing area of investment in energy sector,” he said.
Gulf States also follow the same pace he said. “Saudi Arabia has announced building biggest CSP (Concentrated Solar Power Plant) in the world. Dubai also announced a large solar energy project,” Amin said.