The United Arab Emirates’ biggest clean-power producer is planning to double capacity this year, helping bolster the country’s green credentials ahead of a key climate conference.
Masdar, the Abu Dhabi-based company which operates projects from the UK to Asia, is targeting boosting global capacity to about 40 gigawatts by the end of the year, Chief Executive Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi said in an interview. Acquisitions will be a significant part of its strategy of hitting 100 gigawatt by the end of the decade, he said.
“We are at the right trajectory to achieve the 100 gigawatt target that we set ourself by 2030,” Al Ramahi said. “By the end of the year, my expectation is that we will double our capacity.”
Masdar operates solar power plants in the UAE, OPEC’s third-largest oil producer. The company is also one of the biggest clean-energy investors in the UK, including in the London Array offshore wind project. This year it bought wind and geothermal businesses in Europe, Africa, and Asia, giving it stakes in projects valued at about $6 billion and adding about 3.4 gigawatts of capacity.
“We need to do acquisitions to reach the 2030 capacity goal,” Al Ramahi said. The company will target “different technologies and different geographies with different partners. It’s a large target and it requires a lot of capital.”
The UAE, the first Gulf state to declare a target to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050, is hosting the UN’s COP28 climate conference later this year.
Masdar’s capacity target for this year includes facilities that are operating or in construction. It also includes what Al Ramahi calls a secure pipeline of projects that it plans to go ahead with, but those in an early planning stage aren’t, he said. The 2030 target of 100 gigawatt is based on the gross capacity of projects that Masdar will have stakes in by that time.
The company earlier this year sold its first green bond, a $750 million issue. It plans to raise cash roughly twice annually by selling securities, Al Ramahi said.
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