Empower endorses Booz & Company’s findings
Emirates Central Cooling Corporation (Empower), the largest district cooling (DC) company in the Middle East, has endorsed the research done by management consulting firm Booz & Company, which has concluded that, if implemented under right conditions, district cooling could effectively serve 30% of the region's cooling requirements by 2030.
Ahmed bin Shafar, CEO of Empower said: “The findings of Booz & Company are clear evidence of the crucial role district cooling plays in the Gulf, where air conditioning accounts for a staggering 70% of annual peak electricity consumption and this high cooling demand is expected to nearly treble by 2030.”
The study says that by 2020, the fuel needed to power air-conditioning in the GCC will be the equivalent of 1.5 million barrels of oil per day.
According to the Booz & Company analysis, by 2030, consistent use of district cooling in the region could lead to a reduction of 20 gigawatts in new power capacity requirements, a reduction in the GCC's power plant energy consumption equivalent to 200,000 barrels of oil per day and a region-wide decrease of 31 million tons per year in CO2 emissions.
Bin Shafar added that the report vindicates Empower’s stand since its inception in 2003, which advocated the phasing out of conventional cooling systems gradually in favour of district cooling.
Bin Shafar said that the Gulf has a competitive edge compared to many other countries in the world because of its recent adoption of district cooling. As a result, this technology is seamlessly integrated into the real estate projects, unlike places in Northern America and Europe where the technology has to be added to existing projects.
The study says that perfectly suited to densely populated areas, district cooling offers a more cost-efficient and eco-friendly solution for the GCC - and one which can only thrive through market reforms.
If the current pattern of cooling technology deployment with heavy reliance on conventional cooling technologies is maintained, by 2030, the GCC will have to invest approximately $100bn for new cooling capacity and over $120bn for new power capacity. Over the next 18 years, air-conditioning will account for 60% of additional power generation required in this part of the world.
Bin Shafar said that district cooling is the best chilling system that is environmentally friendly and saves costs for individuals and governments alike.