Power sector in 2030
Power generation in the UAE is currently dominated by natural gas. In recent years, there have been rapid developments in the installation of solar PV and CSP technologies, which reached 2.4 GW in 2020. In April 2021, the first nuclear power plant in the UAE started operations, a first step in reaching its target of a 6% share of the electricity mix by 2050. The UAE aims to reach installed capacity of 14 GW of energy from renewables or nuclear in its power mix by 2030.
To be consistent with the 1.5°C temperature limit, the share of renewable energy generation needs to ramp up to 30-50% by 2030. The share of gas needs to be halved in the power mix by 2030 and phased out completely by 2040. This would result in a two thirds reduction in emissions intensity by 2030, reaching zero between 2040 and 2046.
Towards a fully decarbonised power sector
Phasing out gas from the electricity generation mix in the UAE between 2040 and 2047 is necessary to achieve a Paris Agreement compatible pathway. Emissions intensity from power grid would reach zero between 2040 and 2046.
Some scenarios show emissions intensity becoming negative, reaching -40 gCO₂/kWh by 2050 mostly due to bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS). Delaying the phasing out of fossil fuels in the power sector would require the country to rely more heavily on carbon dioxide removal technologies in the future.