‘Abu Dhabi to play key role in meeting world energy challenges’September 26th, 2008 - 5:17 pm ICT by IANS
Abu Dhabi, Sep 26 (IANS) The United Arab Emirates, particularly Abu Dhabi, will have to play a key leadership role as the world faces challenges in the energy sector, according to a senior oil industry official.”Abu Dhabi has an impressive record of serving its global customers by applying advanced technologies, by its strong commitment to developing necessary skills and capabilities, and by its consistently statesman-like role in global energy markets,” Malcolm Brinded, executive director for exploration and production at global oil major Royal Dutch Shell, said at an event here.
“I have no doubt that this leadership will continue,” he added.
He made these comments during a presentation on ‘Energy: Inevitable Transformation and Difficult Choices - Shell Global Energy Scenarios to 2050′ at a Ramadan gathering organised by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
Brinded said though the world would need all the technology that it could muster to meet the challenges in environment and energy, what would be of more importance is leadership.
“And here Abu Dhabi can and will play a very strong role - through the vision of UAE President Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed, supported by the drive of Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces,” he said.
The UAE is the world’s fifth largest exporter of oil and most of the production is concentrated in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.
“Major producing countries like Abu Dhabi have a key leadership role: in maintaining vital oil and gas supplies, in driving the development of new technologies, and in helping to establish the global conditions necessary for progress,” the Shell executive said.
Stating that the world energy industry would be transformed over the first half of this century, Brinded said Shell projections were looking at two possible scenarios - the Scramble and Blueprints scenarios.
“In the Scramble scenario, countries seek their own short-term solutions - particularly in securing energy supplies - while action on energy efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions is put off,” he said.
In the Blueprints scenario, he explained, a more cooperative and forward-looking approach will bring early international agreement on market measures to promote efficiency, emissions reduction and technology transfer.
“Oil and gas remain an essential part of global energy supplies in both scenarios, although production is higher in Blueprints. Carbon dioxide emissions are significantly lower in Blueprints - with widespread introduction of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS),” he said.
According to Brinded, a Scramble scenario will lead to a turbulent, risky and ultimately unsustainable world, while a Blueprints approach will offer a better long-term basis for sustaining the use of hydrocarbons for energy and chemicals, and for building economies and maintaining global growth.
“And, I believe that major producers like the United Arab Emirates will play an increasingly important leadership role in such a world,” he said.
He also lauded the initiative of the Abu Dhabi government to launch Masdar, a company dedicated to developing renewable energy resources.
“Its (Masdar’s) aim of making Abu Dhabi a centre for developing and exporting alternative energy technologies is both bold and visionary - that’s exactly what I mean by leadership,” Brinded said.
“As well as further reducing emissions, this would provide an important boost in developing these essential technologies for the rest of the world.”
In this context, he mentioned the UAE’s rapid pace of development, which has also led to one of the world’s fastest rates of energy consumption growth and has the potential to constrain Abu Dhabi’s exports, particularly of gas.
Brinded, however, added that Abu Dhabi was responding vigorously to this by unleashing the potential of alternative energy and energy efficiency technologies to replace hydrocarbons in domestic consumption.
“Abu Dhabi has consistently followed a strategy of utilising the knowledge and capabilities of international oil companies as partners in its energy industries. Likewise, Masdar is also based on cooperation with international partners.
“This is the Blueprints ethos, and - as I have discussed - the best hope for our world. It is another example of Abu Dhabi’s capacity to lead,” Brinded said.
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