First Minister to sign Green-Energy deal with Abu Dhabi

68
1516

By a Newsnet reporter

First Minister Alex Salmond will attend a global energy forum in Abu Dhabi this week where he is expected to sign a ground breaking deal with Abu Dhabi renewables giant Masdar that would see Scottish universities working with Masdar academics to develop new wind, solar, wave and tidal technologies.

The agreement will see researchers from Scottish Universities working alongside experts from Abu Dhabi on Scottish projects and could also see significant new investment from one of the wealthiest regions on the planet.

By a Newsnet reporter

First Minister Alex Salmond will attend a global energy forum in Abu Dhabi this week where he is expected to sign a ground breaking deal with Abu Dhabi renewables giant Masdar that would see Scottish universities working with Masdar academics to develop new wind, solar, wave and tidal technologies.

The agreement will see researchers from Scottish Universities working alongside experts from Abu Dhabi on Scottish projects and could also see significant new investment from one of the wealthiest regions on the planet.

The deal will also be a major boost for to the Energy Technology Partnership joint venture by Scottish universities – already the largest energy research link-up in Europe.

Mr Salmond said: “It is clear that the work Masdar is taking forward on leading us to a low carbon society is in perfect synchronisation with the work we are doing here in Scotland.

“This is the first agreement of its kind between Masdar and an individual nation and will work towards developing further university research into renewable energy.

“This landmark deal rightly puts Scotland firmly at the forefront of the green energy revolution and I look forward to this relationship between Scotland and Masdar growing and delivering for all our global futures.”

Abu Dhabi (literally Father of Gazelle), is the capital and the second largest city of the United Arab Emirates – the city of Abu Dhabi alone generated 56.7% of the GDP of the United Arab Emirates in 2008.

One of the world’s largest producers of oil, Abu Dhabi has actively attempted to diversify its economy in recent years through investments in financial services, tourism and significantly in renewable energies.

Masdar, owned by the city of Abu Dhabi, was set up five years ago with the aim of diversifying into and developing renewable energy sources that the world will inevitably require as the oil supply diminishes.  Masdar has built a research university and is also constructing Masdar City outside Abu Dhabi for 40,000 people – designed to be reliant on renewable energy and also, significantly, has a multi-million pound capital fund for investment in projects across the world.

The company’s website states: “We are at the dawn of a global energy revolution that will transform the way we think about power generation, distribution and consumption.  The scale and complexity of these changes is almost without precedent, and companies that seek to survive and thrive in this new environment must have the agility, the expertise and the long-term vision to respond to this new and uncertain landscape.”

Whilst in Abu Dhabi, the First Minister will attend the World Future Energy Summit where he will address representatives from around the world including the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.

The agreement follows on from Mr Salmond’s trip to the oil rich gulf region in October where, as part of an official Scottish Government delegation, he promoted Scottish businesses and education.  The trip is expected to see further announcements including direct flights to and from Scotland to the region.

Chief executive of Scottish Renewables, Niall Stuart, said the Abu Dhabi partnership was “potentially highly significant” and could provide a major funding boost for Scottish Research and Development in the green energy sector.