Masdar ‘keeps humming along’, says report

ABU DHABI, 1st April, 2019 (WAM) — TriplePundit, a website reporting on environment and energy, has featured the latest initiative by Masdar. The project, announced last month, is a partnership with the Australian Antarctic Division, AAD, to deploy what Masdar says is the first solar power system at an Australian base is the Antarctic.

Established over a decade ago, TriplePundit describes its objectives as being to report on “the intersection of people, planet and profit, believing business can be a force for good.” Its website states: “We make the business case for corporate responsibility and sustainability, and the private sector’s leadership to secure social justice and fair economic opportunities for all.”

Masdar and AAD, TriplePundit’s Executive Editor, Leon Kaye, reports, “claim the new installation will generate up to 30 kilowatts of clean power for the Casey station, one of Australia’s three research sites on the continent’s Vincennes Bay. The region is one of Antarctica’s coldest, and in recent years has been the subject of scientists’ concern over its rapidly accelerating ice melt due to climate change.”

“The project,” the article adds, “exemplifies Masdar’s continued interest in Antarctica, which includes a UAE’s university research project that focuses on finding ways to improve monitoring shifts in the Antarctic sea ice. In addition, an internship program sends young Emirati professionals to visit the Casey station, where they work as interns.”

“Masdar touts the project’s solar PV panels, sourced from the German company Aleo Solar, as being built to withstand extreme weather conditions in the Antarctic. Wind speeds in the world’s southernmost continent can roar to almost 187 miles an hour (300 km/hour), and the average temperature hovers from -14 to -76 Fahrenheit (-10 to -60 Celsius), depending on the time of year. The Casey project station, hence, could also serve as a test case for how next-generation solar panels could perform in places where extreme weather is the norm.”

“Now moving ahead into its second decade, Masdar demonstrates thought-provoking ideas to oil-dependent economies on how they can transition to a 21st Century, low-carbon economy,” Kaye said.

Noting that Masdar had come under criticism early in the life of the project, when a number of its ambitious plans were scaled back, Kaye added, “At its origins, Masdar conducted a welcoming and transparent visitors’ programme, which unfortunately led to press reports of an empty city. That’s no longer the case, as the city is now full of restaurants as it emerges as the entertainment district of Abu Dhabi’s outer suburbs – and it could only grow due to its proximity to Dubai. The opening of more residential complexes will also show that Masdar can thrive 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Nevertheless, while naysayers keep saying it can’t be done, Masdar keeps achieving and humming along, defying the odds.”



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