The chairman of UAE renewables company Masdar last week revealed that it has invested $2.7 billion in clean energy projects since it was formed in 2006.
But Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber stressed that “we will not deploy a single dollar if we do not think that this dollar is secure.”
He was speaking at the opening of the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi and outlined how the renewables finance landscape has changed in the last half decade.
“Of course each investment has their own risks, but in the past five years everything has changed,” he said.
He added that it was a fact that in the past, renewables were “costly and because of that, Masdar had to swim against the tide. But now renewables can compete on a standalone basis.”
The previous day, Al Jaber had spoken at the opening of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, where he told delegates that “for the first time in the industrial age, carbon emissions are levelling off and even starting to drop. In this new era, renewables and hydrocarbons enjoy a truly symbiotic relationship that is reshaping the economics of energy.”
He said that for decades the Gulf region had led the oil and gas industry but now “we are extending our reach to become the center of gravity for all forms of energy.”
He said the deploying renewables “liberates hydrocarbons” and “where solar excels at peak hours, natural gas provides a necessary low-emission, low-cost, baseload power foundation. Combining both is a winning partnership that makes perfect economic sense.”
And he added that “while oil and gas will remain critical drivers of the global economy for decades to come, we recognize the immediate and long-term advantages of a fully diversified energy mix,” and he said that renewables and natural gas in tandem had “begun to reset the carbon clock.”