Majid Al-Futtaim goes green, unveils renewable energy plans

MajidMajid Al Futtaim, shopping mall, retail and leisure builder across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, has plans to use solar photovoltaic (PV) technology to generate at least five per cent of its total energy consumption at existing developments by 2018

The power that will be generated at existing developments is equivalent to 38,000 MW hours per year, and is comparable to the amount of energy produced by the largest power station in Al Dur (Bahrain), running at full capacity for over a day, said the retail giant in its white paper on renewable energy published recently.

“Majid Al Futtaim has consistently made bold statements on sustainability. We are fully committed to supporting the UAE government’s development priorities and the Paris Agreement reached at COP21,” remarked Robert Welanetz, CEO at Majid Al Futtaim – Properties.

The decision to invest in renewable energy comes as we approach the midway point in our five-year sustainability strategy. Solar technology at existing developments will help us to reduce our carbon footprint by 27,000 absolute tonnes of carbon emissions annually,” he added.

A white paper on renewable energy published by the company revealed that this emissions saving could be achieved for an investment of US$41.3mn, with returns delivered in as little as nine years.

This estimate is based on a 10.6 per cent internal rate of return – the interest rate at which the value of cash flows from an investment equal zero.

In the last three years, Majid Al Futtaim said that it has reduced energy consumption by nine per cent across the 12 hotels in its portfolio. It expects to save a further US$0.81mn by installing LED lighting at the 19 shopping malls that it manages across the region.

In line with this environmental commitment, Majid Al Futtaim will source a minimum of 7.5 per cent minimum of its energy consumption at all new developments from solar energy.

The company is also exploring offsite energy production, primarily concentrated solar power, wind power plants and large scale solar PV power installations. To support this process assessments are focused on identifying potential partnership opportunities, Majid Al-Futtaim stated.

“The business case for investing in renewable energy is strong, but the environmental case is equally as strong,” stated Ibrahim Al Zu’bi, head of sustainability.

In July 2016, Majid Al Futtaim Properties launched its fifth annual Sustainability Report for 2015, which evaluates corporate achievements and charts progress made against long-term goals for 2018.

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