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Expert at Dubai School of Government Calls for Parallel Measures to Address Energy Consumption

Jim Krane Highlights Paradoxical Shortage of Natural Gas in UAE.

November 16, 2010 9:59 by

The UAE is one of the world’s major storehouses of oil and gas, and yet cannot produce enough feedstock to meet its fast-rising electricity demand, says Jim Krane, Non-resident Fellow at the Dubai School of Government,a research and teaching institution that focuses on public policy in the Arab world.

He said: “The shortage of natural gas is one of the main reasons why governments in this region are turning their attention towards nuclear and renewablepower, but these are expensive options.”

Krane’s comments cameat a lecture hosted by the Dubai School of Government (DSG). Titled‘The UAE Electricity Dilemma and Abu Dhabi’s Ventures in Alternative Energy’,the talk comes at a time when the region is looking at optimizing system performance and introducing renewable energy projects and nuclear power, in addition to exploring a variety of methods to meet rising electricity consumption.

Krane added:“The investments that have been made into alternative sources of energy consumption could bring plenty of political and strategic benefits, as well as economic opportunities. But this will not fix the shortage in the long run. Parallel measures of energy conservation would be needed to meet the rising electricity consumption in the region.”

The UAE Energy Ministry forecasts the power demand growth for the UAE to be 33,400MW by 2020, representing an 81 percent increase on current consumption levels.

TarekYousef, Dean of Dubai School of Government, said: “Jim Krane’sobservations highlight the challenges that governments in the region face in meeting rapidly rising demands for electricity. While the UAE should and will continue to pursue renewable and alternative energy projects to boost supply, it is essential that skyrocketing demand is addressed with thoughtful and effective conservation measures.”

Jim Krane is a journalist and author of “City of Gold: Dubai and the Dream of Capitalism,” which he worked onduring his time as a Visiting Fellow at the Dubai School of Government in 2008-2009.He has a Master’s in International Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.. He is currently researching Gulf energy issues at the University of Cambridge’s Judge Business School.

Established in 2005 in cooperation with the Harvard Kennedy School, the Dubai School of Government is dedicated to the promotion of good governance through enhancement of the region’s capacity for public policy. The School collaborates with regional and global institutions in delivering its research and training programs, and organizes policy forums and international conferences to promote critical debate on public policy in the Arab world.

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