The UAE is heavily reliant on fossil fuels with natural gas and oil’s shares in primary energy at 76% and around 21% respectively in 2016. While the residential and commercial buildings sectors are the main consumers of electricity in the UAE, the largest primary energy consumers are the industry and transport sectors.
As of 2018, electricity generation in the UAE was dominated by gas (97.7%), with a minimal share of oil (1.8%) and renewables (0.5%). Total installed capacity was 30 GW in 2017. In recent years the installation of solar (both PV and concentrated solar power technologies) has grown significantly, reaching 2.4 GW in 2020.
The UAE aims to increase the share of renewable and nuclear energy to 50% in its installed power capacity mix by 2050. The country started the commercial operation of Barakah nuclear power plant in April 2021, which is the first nuclear power plant in Arab world.