ABU DHABI,Oct 31 (WAM) – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is committed to using nuclear energy to materialise its national developmental needs, said Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Industry, on Monday.
”The UAE Vision 2021 is our roadmap towards the future and it is a strong enabler of the Sustainable Development Goals such as ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all,” the minister said while delivering the UAE statement at the opening of the IAEA International Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Power in the 21st Century in Abu Dhabi yesterday.
”Our efforts to diversify energy have been continuous. Earlier this year we launched the National Energy Strategy 2050 through which we aim to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 70 per cent, and increase clean energy use by 50 per cent, all by 2050.” Nuclear energy, he added, forms an essential part of the de-carbonisation of the UAE energy mix. This plan comes at a crucial time as the UAE is in the final stages of construction of its first nuclear energy plant with the commissioning process well underway.
”The construction of my country’s four reactors continues to progress well with overall completion of all four standing at more than 84 per cent. The construction of the Barakah Unit 1 is almost completed at 96 per cent. Once all reactors are fully operational, the four units will produce up to 25 per cent of the UAE’s energy needs – a significant contribution,” he explained.
”Since embarking on the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme almost 10 years ago, our nation has made great strides and achieved significant steps in the development of its nuclear power programme and related infrastructure, following IAEA guidance and international best practices,” the minister added.
According to the minister, these steps include the establishment of an independent and competent regulator, the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR). UAE nuclear industry led by the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation and its subsidiaries will continue developing a world-class nuclear power plant project and will soon operate and maintain the Barakah with the highest standards.
The special gathering in Abu Dhabi will deliberate on the future of nuclear energy and its contribution to sustainable development.
”The UAE applauds the IAEA for its role in the transfer of knowledge and technology supporting the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Member States,” said the minister.
The UAE has received valuable support from the IAEA which facilitated the development of the infrastructure and human resources required for a safe, secure and successful nuclear energy programme. IAEA Peer-review missions are critical to ensure the adequacy of safety measures and relevant national infrastructure. With its firm commitment to transparency, the UAE has received 9 reviews from the IAEA covering various areas including safety and regulatory framework, emergency preparedness and operational readiness.
”My country looks forward to continue working with the IAEA and the international community towards promoting the responsible use of nuclear energy,” the minister concluded. (WAM) (END/2017)