His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office and Chairman of the Executive Committee of ADNOC’s Board of Directors, has launched a landmark clean energy partnership between the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and EWEC (Emirates Water and Electricity Company).
The strategic partnership, which is the largest of its kind in the oil and gas industry, will see up to 100 per cent of ADNOC’s grid power supplied by EWEC’s nuclear and solar clean energy sources, making ADNOC the first major oil and gas company to decarbonise its power at scale through a clean power agreement and strengthening the company’s position as one of the world’s least carbon-intensive oil and gas producers.
Simultaneously, EWEC will benefit from long-term electricity offtake for its current and future renewable and clean power sources, which include solar and nuclear power, enabling continued investment in transformative innovations to decarbonise the energy sector.
This progressive approach supports the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative and enhances ADNOC’s pathway to decarbonisation while enabling sustainable future growth. It also underpins the UAE’s bold and strategic approach to enable a lower carbon future.
Commenting on the agreement, His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan emphasised the importance of capitalising on opportunities to achieve the UAE 2050 Net Zero Emissions Target.
His Highness said: “The Clean Energy Partnership between ADNOC and EWEC brings together two major UAE entities to unlock mutual value as they harness the nation’s energy resources to drive economic progress, in support of the UAE’s ‘Principles of the 50’ outlined by the leadership to chart a strategic roadmap for the nation’s new era of economic and social growth over the next 50 years. This pioneering partnership highlights ADNOC’s vital role in investing in transformative innovations, advancing decarbonisation efforts, and supporting the diversification of the UAE's energy portfolio. It also marks a major moment in the activation of a strategic, long term plan to further decarbonise ADNOC’s operations sustainably. We commend ADNOC for its innovative actions and its global industry leadership.”
The agreement was signed by His Excellency Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and Managing Director and Group CEO of ADNOC, and His Excellency Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, Chief Executive Officer of ADQ and Chairman of EWEC.
H.E. Dr. Al Jaber said: “ADNOC is committed to responsibly providing the world’s energy needs with a determined focus on decarbonizing our operations, lowering our carbon intensity and strengthening our environmental stewardship and economic performance, in line with the Leadership’s wise directives, the Paris Climate Accords and our energy transition strategy. As we embrace the energy transition, and prepare for COP 26, ADNOC extends an open invitation to new and existing partners to join us in delivering practical solutions to secure a cleaner energy future.
“This landmark clean energy partnership with EWEC, will make ADNOC the first major oil and gas company to decarbonise its power at scale through a clean power partnership of this kind. It also directly supports our goal to remain one of the lowest carbon intensity operators in the oil and gas industry, and underscores how hydrocarbons, clean energy and advanced energy sources can complement each other in the energy transition.”
The clean energy partnership reinforces ADNOC’s role as a leading global supplier of lower carbon oil and gas products and builds on its legacy of responsible hydrocarbon production. Murban, ADNOC’s flagship crude grade, already has a carbon intensity that is less than half the industry average, a figure that will be further improved as a result of this agreement.
Murban was made more accessible to global market participants following the start of trading of the Murban Futures Contract on ICE Futures Abu Dhabi (IFAD) earlier this year, and is well positioned as the lowest carbon crude oil of choice for countries and refiners seeking to lower the carbon intensity of their hydrocarbon products.
H.E. Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, Chief Executive Officer of ADQ and Chairman of Emirates Water and Electricity Company, said: “The Abu Dhabi energy sector has been on an progressive and strategic path towards sustainability. This long-term clean energy supply agreement is a testament to the targeted investment EWEC has placed in developing world leading renewable projects, and the UAE’s vision in developing the first nuclear energy plant in the Arab World.
“With ADQ’s commitment to sustainable investing, these world-class projects are the catalyst that is driving decarbonization of the energy sector, and supporting the UAE’s ambitious and world leading sustainability goals. Through this agreement, we are providing a platform that will advance ADNOC’s clean energy goals and enable EWEC’s continued investment in new renewable and clean energy projects to advance the diversification of Abu Dhabi’s energy mix. We look forward to working closely with ADNOC and many other organizations in collectively taking action on climate change through partnerships with EWEC.”
On the refined products side, the new partnership will further reduce the carbon intensity of ADNOC products. For example, ADNOC is a large producer of aviation fuel, which is sold to customers both locally and globally. The new clean energy agreement will lower the carbon intensity of ADNOC’s aviation fuel, positioning it as one of the lowest carbon intensity Jet-A1 fuels available and an important enabler of ongoing de-carbonization efforts in the aviation sector.
As part of the partnership, the clean energy supplied to ADNOC will be validated via I-REC Clean Energy Certificates registered by EWEC.
EWEC has a growing portfolio of renewable and clean energy projects, led by Noor Abu Dhabi, the world’s largest single-site solar power plant. Noor Abu Dhabi produces approximately 1.2 gigawatts of power resulting in a carbon footprint reduction of 1 million metric tons per year, which is equivalent to taking 200,000 cars off the road. EWEC is also developing the Al Dhafra Solar PV IPP project, which will be the new world’s largest single-site solar power plant, using approximately 4 million solar panels to generate enough electricity for approximately 160,000 homes across the UAE. Upon full commercial operation, Al Dhafra Solar PV is expected to reduce Abu Dhabi’s CO2 emissions by more than 2.4 million metric tons per year, equivalent to removing approximately 470,000 cars from the road.
In addition to developing world leading solar power projects, EWEC is supporting the integration of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant to the Abu Dhabi grid. Once all four nuclear reactors are fully operational, the Barakah Plant will prevent the release of up to 21 million tonnes of carbon emissions every year, leading the biggest decarbonisation efforts in the region.
The new clean energy partnership will accelerate ADNOC’s sustainability goal of decreasing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity by 25% by 2030 and offers the potential for additional value and operational efficiencies.