Abu Dhabi: the minister for climate change and the environment of the United Arab Emirates Thani Al Zeyoudi has announced the intention to build a new two gigawatt solar power plant in the Al Dhafra region, while addressing the session opening of the two-day Abu Dhabi Climate meeting at Emirates Palace on Sunday.
"It will eclipse the record-setting gigawatt project, which currently exists," said Mohammad Bin Rashid's Solar Energy Park project in Dubai, announced in 2012.
"It is one of the largest projects currently underway," Al Zeyoudi told the Gulf News after his speech.
"We welcome companies to submit offers," he added, without commenting on the times or costs. "It is ongoing and we do not see the time for offers to arrive.
"We have goals and will continue on an annual basis to propose new projects to achieve these goals. The offer is open to all", he stated that the project was aimed at local or international companies.
The UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, welcomed the commitment of the UAE in a speech that despised the efforts of other nations to move away from the use of fossil fuels.
"Unfortunately it is not yet clear to all decision-makers around the world to see," said Guterres. "Even if countries keep their promises, we should still face a temperature increase of at least three degrees by the end of the century which will be a catastrophe for life as we know it.
"Even more worrying is the fact that many countries are not keeping pace with their promises provided by the Paris agreement and that is why we will be meeting in September," added the United Nations climate summit in New York , that this event in Abu Dhabi a precursor of
"Scientists say we are less than 12 years old to limit the increase in global temperature to 1.5 degrees by the end of the century, with which we will have to face irreversible climate problems.
"We need a post-carbon and resilient society that can only be achieved if we are together. My message on this summit is clear and simple, we are in the battle of our lives but it is a battle that can be won.
"New technologies are already less expensive than fossil fuel economies, and solar and offshore wind farms are the cheapest source of new energy. In this regard, I look forward to seeing the new Abu Dhabi solar power plant today. and to commend the work of renewable agencies hosted by Abu Dhabi in supporting countries in transition towards a sustainable future ".
Al Zeyoudi had previously announced UAE emission reduction targets of 75% by 2050 and boasted donations totaling $ 1 billion (Dh3.7 billion) to the cause of developing countries.
"It is movement, but unfortunately it is not enough worldwide," said Guterres. "This is what I hope to change at the summit on climate action, and the message is clear: solutions exist.
"We need a green economy not a gray economy," he added.
"New infrastructures must be smart for the climate with sustainable, clean and economic energy. What we need is a change in the way we do business, generate power, build cities and feed the world," he added before announcing that wanted to present in New York plans on how each country would reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 45 percent by 2030.