Dubai’s EZW and Etihad Esco to undertake largest energy retrofit project in Middle East

jebelalifreezone chrisprice flickrThe Jebel Ali Free Zone could become one of the most energy-efficient business hubs. (Image source: Chris Price/Flickr)Economic Zones World (EZW) has signed an MoU with DEWA’s Etihad Esco to retrofit its existing buildings and facilities with energy-efficiency enhancing solutions

The first phase of the project comprises the energy retrofit of 157 staff accommodation buildings in Jafza and includes replacement of 5000 old air conditioners with highly efficient split units; 85,000 old light fixtures with high efficiency LEDs and 31,000 old water fixtures with new efficient water units, said Jafza authorities.

Once completed, this will be the largest energy retrofit project in the Middle East. The project is being executed to realise the goal of Jafza to become the most energy-efficient business hub. Additionally, the project is in line with the UAE government's Dubai 2021 plan to use technology and innovation to convert Dubai into a sustainable green city.

DP World and Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation chairman Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem said, “The utility cost is the second largest expense for Jafza. The power and water consumption level in Jafza crossed 75 million KWh and 750 million IG per year respectively. As a pioneering free zone and top business hub, we felt the urgent need to make our old commercial and residential buildings more energy efficient.”

A detailed technical scope for an energy conservation project has been developed, and top licensed certified specialists are expected to participate in this mega project. Etihad ESCO, known for their Energy Conservation Measures (ECMs), is expected to achieve an average consumption savings of 28 per cent power, 36 per cent water while reducing carbon footprint by 75,000 tonnes.

The EZW-Etihad ESCO contract is for seven years, which includes one year for the project retrofit and six years for implementation. The project will generate a net saving of 30 per cent worth US$36mn over the six-year period. The project will be funded by Etihad ESCO through sharia compliant financing from National Bonds Corporation. The repayment (including financing cost) will be met from the guaranteed savings over the project period.

The guaranteed savings over will include the savings of 158 GWh (28 per cent) in electricity consumption and 1.2 billion IG (36 per cent) in water consumption, which together amounts to net 30 per cent savings. The project will result in the reduction of 75,000 tonnes of carbon emission into the atmosphere.

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