Abu Dhabi presents Masdar vision to US panel
Washington, June 19, 2008
Abu Dhabi’s vision to accelerate the widespread deployment of clean and affordable renewable energy was presented to the US Congress by Dr Sultan Al Jaber, CEO of Abu Dhabi’s Masdar Initiative today.
Dr Al Jaber’s presentation came during a US Congressional hearing where he testified before the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming in Washington, DC.
Invited to present by committee chairman, Congressman Ed Markey, Dr Al Jaber spoke at the hearing entitled: “Towns in Transition: Planning Communities for a Changing Climate,” during which he provided insights on Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City, which will be the world’s first carbon-neutral, car-free city, which is also 100 percent powered by renewable energy.
The committee, which was established in 2007 by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, works to add urgency and resources to address the challenges of America’s dependence on oil and the threat of global warming.
“At this historic moment and under the support and guidance of our leadership, I’m articulating Abu Dhabi’s strategic vision of a new partnership on clean energy and sustainable human development,” Dr Al Jaber told the committee. “We seek to partner with the US and the global community at large, in championing these important issues through extensive bilateral ties and investment,” he added.
The hearing addressed innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues, including more efficient use of land, water, energy, and transportation. Particular attention was paid to models and case studies from around the globe which could be transferred to the United States and other countries.
The testimony highlighted global demographics changes which further underscore the urgency for solutions at scale. “For the first time in history, more than half of the world’s population now lives in cities, with their traditional energy inefficiencies, waste and pollution,” Dr Al Jaber told the committee. “We must fundamentally re-think how cities can conserve energy and other resources. We must heavily employ new technologies and even create new urban models, as we are doing in Masdar City”, he added.
Dr Al Jaber’s testimony was well received by the members of Congress. During his comments, chairman Markey (Massachusetts) said: “Masdar City and Abu Dhabi represent the future of sustainable communities.
“Masdar is one of the most amazing projects in the world,” Congressman Emanuel Cleaver (Missouri) added. Similar sentiments were also echoed by Congressmen Earl Blumenauer (Oregon), Jay Inslee (Washington) and other members of the committee.
“I believe that my appearance here today will lead to more partnerships with American companies and institutions,” said Dr Al Jaber. “The committee’s work closely mirrors our own belief that we can help bring communities together for a common cause, by jointly addressing fundamental issues such as climate change and sustainable development. This is something the leadership of Abu Dhabi recognized when they took the strategic initiative to make Masdar a reality.”
Dr Al Jaber invited the committee to visit Abu Dhabi to witness Masdar’s efforts first hand, and extended an open invitation for collaboration. Following the testimony, he met with US elected officials and industry leaders to discuss the Masdar Initiative in depth and to explore collaborative efforts on the future energy challenge.
Additionally, Dr Al Jaber addressed the US-UAE Business Council, including chamber members representing Middle East companies, in a session titled “Masdar-Transforming the Global Alternative Energy Marketplace.”
“Abu Dhabi recognises that a range of solutions are required to meet future energy needs and Masdar reflects our leadership’s strategic vision to continue its role as a global energy leader,” Dr Al Jaber told the audience. – TradeArabia News Service