11 NOV 2022

Africa Primed to Become Global Green Hydrogen Leader, Landmark Masdar Report Finds

Africa could capture up to 10% of global green hydrogen market, helping to create up to 3.7 million jobs and adding as much as US$120bn to GDP by 2050, report released at COP27 shows
Green hydrogen production on this scale would accelerate deployment of renewable energy across continent and increase electrification rate
Report produced by Masdar and Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week with analytical support provided by McKinsey & Company 

Africa could capture as much as 10 percent of the global green hydrogen market, helping to create up to 3.7 million jobs and adding as much as US$120 billion to the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP), according to a landmark report issued jointly by Masdar and its Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) platform on the sidelines of the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27).  

Africa’s plentiful solar and wind resources could be leveraged to produce 30 to 60 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of green hydrogen by 2050, about 5 to 10 percent of global demand, according to the report, “Africa’s Green Energy Revolution: Hydrogen’s role in unlocking Africa’s untapped renewables,” produced with analytical support provided by McKinsey & Company.

An African hydrogen industry with that production capacity would likely create 1.9 to 3.7 million jobs and boost GDP by as much as US$60 to 120 billion by 2050, the report finds.

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Masdar Chief Executive Officer, said, “This report provides a blueprint for African nations to deliver sustainable, low-carbon growth while extending energy access across the continent. Green hydrogen has the potential to reduce emissions, unlock economic opportunities, and create new and valuable jobs for countries across the Middle East and North Africa region. Masdar has long recognized green hydrogen’s potential, with investments as far back as 2008. With several green hydrogen projects underway today around the world – including a number in Africa – we look forward to continuing to work closely with our African partners to maximize the many achievable benefits of green hydrogen highlighted in this report.”  

Africa could be among the most competitive sources for green hydrogen in the world, the report shows, with a cost of US$1.8 to 2.6 per kilogram (kg) in 2030, further decreasing to about US$1.2 to 1.6 per kg by 2050 as hydrogen production technology matures and renewable energy costs continue to decline. 

Proximity to demand centers in Europe and Asia also optimally positions the continent to build an export-oriented hydrogen sector, the report suggests, noting African energy exports via green hydrogen and derivatives would reach 20 to 40 mtpa by 2050.  

The remaining 10-20 mtpa would serve domestic hydrogen demand, helping to boost electrification of African communities and delivering other socioeconomic benefits, including a more sustainable energy grid, expanded clean energy access, and reduced reliance on fossil fuel imports.

Masdar Director of Asset Management and Technical Services, Mohammad Abdelqader El Ramahi, said: “Scaling up green hydrogen is an opportunity to not only build a robust global-export sector on the African continent, but also to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy overall. The grid-connected renewables used for green hydrogen production can feed energy into the grid to provide affordable clean energy to under-resourced areas – notably, in Sub-Saharan Africa, which has an average electrification rate of only 48 percent.” 

Enabling production on the scale of 30-60 mtpa would require between 1,500 and 3,000 terawatt hours (TWh) of renewable energy – equivalent to more than 50 times Africa’s current total production from solar and wind, the report states. The largest share of the investments (US$320- 610 billion) would go to the renewables needed to produce the hydrogen, followed by electrolysis plants (US$115-220 billion). For export projects, most of the needed capital is expected to come from foreign investors, according to the report.

Beyond investments, the report recommends six broad areas for action: development of an integrated master plan; governance, international coordination, and mobilization; establishment of regulatory frameworks for hydrogen exports; investments in infrastructure; sourcing and building a highly skilled workforce; and deployment of project de-risking mechanisms.

Masdar, one of the world’s leading clean energy companies, is actively involved in a number of projects related to green hydrogen production. In April, Masdar and Egypt’s Hassan Allam Utilities signed agreements with leading Egyptian state-backed organizations to cooperate on the development of green hydrogen production plants in the country, targeting an electrolyzer capacity of 4 gigawatts by 2030, and output of up to 480,000 tonnes of green hydrogen per year.

The Masdar-ADSW report on Africa’s green hydrogen potential can be found online  here


18 SEP 2023

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week to Host Special Edition at COP28

· Held under the patronage of UAE President HH Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Special Edition of ADSW to take place during nation’s hosting of UN Climate Change Conference and mark the UAE’s Year of Sustainability
· ADSW Summit to take place on December 4th at Connect Conference Center, Expo City, Dubai
· Extensive program of ADSW events and roundtables planned for COP28 will discuss accelerating just transition to net-zero future, climate finance, sustainable development, the tripling of renewable energy capacity and the promotion of climate action
· Masdar’s global strategic initiative will bridge sustainability thought leadership throughout COP28 with active presence in blue and green zones

Under the patronage of UAE President HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan who continues to champion sustainability as a key pillar of the UAE’s economic and social progress and prosperity, Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW), a global initiative championed by the UAE and its clean energy powerhouse Masdar, will host the next edition of ADSW at the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28).

ADSW will play a critical role in maintaining worldwide climate momentum at COP28, by enabling impactful and inclusive dialogue between all global stakeholders, translating pledges into practical solutions for a net-zero future.

HE Dr Sultan Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, Chairman of Masdar and COP28 President-Designate, said: “As the UAE looks ahead to hosting COP28, it is vital that we use every opportunity at our disposal to fast-track a just and orderly energy transition and to keep 1.5 degrees within reach. Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) was set up by Masdar in 2008 and has grown into a leading global initiative that extends well beyond one week. The special edition of ASDW at COP28 provides an important platform for a wider community of key stakeholders to have their voices heard and to accelerate a just and inclusive transition to a net-zero future.”

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer, Masdar, said: “This special edition of ADSW provides an important occasion to highlight the UAE’s Year of Sustainability at COP28 and reflects the legacy of climate action that Masdar’s global initiative, ADSW, continues to spearhead. We are proud to host this unique ADSW at COP28 and look forward to welcoming key stakeholders in sustainability and clean energy as we look to drive positive change to tackle the world's most urgent and pressing challenges together.”

The ADSW Summit, taking place on 4 December at the Connect Conference Center, Expo City, Dubai will be held under the theme of United on Climate Action at COP28, and will bring together forward-thinking leaders from the public sector, civil society, and business to identify ways to accelerate the just transition to a net-zero future. 

Hosted on COP28’s thematic finance day, the Summit will address issues such as investing for inclusion and climate finance, and identify pathways to accelerate sustainable development around the world.  

Throughout COP28, ADSW will provide a bridge for thought leadership by hosting events in both the blue and green zones, enabling timely and relevant climate action conversation and debate to accredited parties, observer delegates and the general public. 

In the Green Zone, the ADSW Partnership Hub will run a series of structured collaborative activities that will encourage participants to exchange ideas and build successful business relationships. In the evenings, the hub will host networking receptions for attendees to wind down, connect and share climate action thoughts.

ADSW’s virtual content platform; ADSW Live will be streaming a series of interviews live and direct from the Green Zone, capturing daily reaction to climate discussions, and sharing timely, relevant sustainability-oriented content wrap-ups.

ADSW at COP28 will also feature the WiSER initiative. WiSER is committed to positioning women and girls as drivers of change and innovation, in addition to ensuring their voices are heard across the sustainability debate. WiSER will work on a series of activations across COP28.

Youth 4 Sustainability, a Masdar initiative which invests in and actively supports the development of young people to become the sustainability leaders of tomorrow, will be hosting the Y4S Forum on 8 December.  

ADSW at COP28 confirmed sponsors include the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, Investcorp and HSBC.

As in previous years, ADSW will also feature partner-led events and opportunities for international engagement on sustainability-related topics, including the International Renewable Energy Agency, the Atlantic Council, Tamkeen, and others during COP28. 

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) is a global initiative championed by the UAE and its clean energy powerhouse Masdar, to accelerate sustainable development and advance economic, social, and environmental progress. Established in 2008, ADSW provides a global platform for all who have a stake in the future of our planet. ADSW brings together leaders from across governments, the private sector and civil society, to discuss and engage on bold climate action and the innovations that will ensure a sustainable world for future generations.

As the UAE’s clean energy champion, Masdar’s global footprint has expanded exponentially over the past 17 years, with new renewable energy projects currently under development in Europe, Africa, Central Asia, the Americas. This includes the Cirata floating solar plant in Indonesia, the largest in South-East Asia, and the Garadagh Solar PV Plant, Azerbaijan’s first foreign investment-based independent utility scale solar project.

Masdar is active in over 40 countries and has invested in a portfolio of renewable energy projects with a combined capacity of around 20 gigawatts (GW). Masdar aims to grow this to at least 100 

GW by 2030. The company is also targeting green hydrogen production of 1 million tonnes per annum by the same year.


28 FEB 2023

Carbon Intensive Industries Call for Financing to Support Decarbonization

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and Masdar-produced report finds decarbonization budgets are significant source of concern, with less than a third of executives believing their funds are adequate
60 percent of organizations taking steps to reduce emissions but have not yet set net-zero targets, with reliable financing the main barrier to accelerating commitments
Half of industry executives now believe net zero is more feasible than previously but call on governments to boost support

Executives from ‘hard-to-abate’ industries have called for increased financing to support decarbonization efforts, following the release of a landmark report that outlines less than a third believe they have adequate budgets to do so, and over half have not yet set net-zero targets.

Reducing emissions in the hard-to-abate industries – cement, steel, aluminum, petrochemicals, shipping, aviation, heavy industry, and manufacturing – is vital in the effort to combat climate change, with industry and transport accounting for almost half of global emissions. 

The findings from ‘Hard to Abate, Ready to Start’, published today by Masdar, the host of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW), in partnership with FT Longitude, furthers the discussion on decarbonization by identifying the biggest hurdles, and what is needed to drive greater action in the lead up to the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in the UAE.
Although challenging, the report finds that half of senior industry leaders are more confident that net zero in their business is more achievable today compared to a few years ago.

HE Dr Sultan Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, COP28 President-Designate, and Chairman of Masdar, said “COP28 will see the conclusion of the Global Stocktake, offering a review of progress against the Paris Agreement. We know that the results will show a significant gap in where we are and where we need to be. The UAE is committed to addressing this, to reigniting momentum and to bringing the goal of 1.5 within reach. Addressing carbon emissions in hard-to-abate sectors is a priority in that regard. There is simply no path to net-zero that does not include decarbonizing these essential industries.”

Despite the optimism that exists across the industry, and the emergence of innovative new technologies to capture and store carbon, reliable finance remains a major barrier for accelerating progress for many senior executives. Despite strong progress across the sector over the past decade, 60 percent of organizations surveyed across Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, and North America have still not set decarbonization targets, and leaders from those organizations cite a lack of reliable finance as the main barrier for committing to targets. 83 percent and 62 percent of senior executives from the Middle East and Asia-Pacific respectively highlighted that they are taking steps to reduce emissions but have not set a target date for completion. Further, only 30 percent of senior executives overall, indicated their budgets will be able to meet decarbonization needs, and more than 50 percent are concerned about the impact of global economic headwinds on decarbonization investment.

Ahead of COP28, the UAE Presidency has made clear that access to finance and capital will be a priority, noting that both governments and private sector partners require the resources needed to commit to transformative action. This includes investing in the breakthrough technologies and innovations needed to drive ambition, such as carbon capture and storage, and other forms of decarbonization.

In addition to financing hurdles, the report also highlights the disparity in available technologies to accelerate decarbonization. Despite the progress made in recent years, the research outlines the gap in “frontier” technologies available at a commercial scale, delaying energy-intensive industries in ramping up decarbonization efforts. 

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar, said “Building on important momentum gained during ADSW 2023, this report is a vital tool to drive forward decarbonization in hard-to-abate industries. Masdar, a global clean energy powerhouse, will continue to play a leading role by fostering global collaboration amongst governments and private sector partners. We intend to seize the opportunity of utility-scale renewable energy and focus our investments in frontier technologies like sustainable aviation fuel and green hydrogen to help accelerate global progress ahead of COP28 and beyond.”

As well as calling for greater industry collaboration, the report highlights the importance of increased public sector support and calls upon global governments to deliver innovative incentives across funding, legislation, and taxation to support national net-zero targets. As highlighted in the report, only 24 percent of senior executives expect to receive funding from government funds or incentives and 41 percent believe that without greater incentives and funding they will be unable to meet their domestic market’s net-zero targets.

Publication of today’s report comes ahead of the UAE’s preparations to host COP28 later this year. This global event will act as a major milestone in progressing conversations and inclusive solutions across all sectors, including those hard-to-abate industries. In convening key players from this sector, COP28 will aim to accelerate climate action and deliver concrete outcomes and solutions for climate change. 

In his role as COP President-Designate, Dr Al Jaber has emphasized the need to address gaps by bringing public and private partners together in a “COP of Action, and a COP for All”. The UAE is firmly committed to an inclusive approach to climate action that includes industry leaders, civil society, academics, women, youth, and indigenous peoples.  

In addition to COP28, ‘Hard to Abate, Ready to Start’ will help frame discussions at the upcoming International Energy Week in London and S&P CERA Week in Houston, Texas.

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) is a global initiative championed by the UAE and its clean energy powerhouse Masdar, to accelerate sustainable development and advance economic, social, and environmental progress. Established in 2008, ADSW provides a global platform for all who have a stake in the future of our planet. ADSW brings together leaders from across governments, the private sector and civil society, to discuss and engage on bold climate action and the innovations that will ensure a sustainable world for future generations.

Read the full report here.


24 JAN 2023

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2023 Successfully Concludes Setting UAE on Road to COP28

Held under the patronage of UAE President, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, ADSW 2023 opening ceremony was attended by His Highness and 13 heads of state and prime ministers
Across six days, a series of landmark agreements were signed, positioning the UAE as a leader on climate action
Anchor event, ADSW Summit, covered the upcoming COP28, pathway to net zero, transformative tech, financing climate action, and food and energy security 
ADSW’s first Green Hydrogen Summit convened global leaders to discuss the development of the UAE hydrogen economy, green energy in Africa and hydrogen’s value chain 
ADSW 2023 hosted 36,000 participants from 170 countries, including 13 heads of state and more than 600 global speakers 

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW), successfully concluded its fifteenth edition, with a resounding show of commitment to climate action ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28), to be held in the UAE later this year.

Under the theme of ‘United on Climate Action Towards COP28,’ the six-day event was the first global sustainability gathering of a critical year, and it served as the first official platform for the recently announced COP28 leadership team, led by H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, COP28 President-Designate, and Chairman of Masdar. In his keynote at the Opening Ceremony, H.E. Dr. Al Jaber called for the world to come together around COP28 to cooperate and collaborate and turn rhetoric into tangible results.

Global dignitaries, including 13 heads of state and a record number of attendees, convened to progress dialogue on the transition to a net-zero future. The event was held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE who attended the opening ceremony with Yoon Suk Yeol, President of the Republic of Korea, and Ilham Aliyev, President of Azerbaijan delivering keynote speeches. 

Championed by the UAE and its clean energy powerhouse, Masdar, ADSW 2023, also welcomed world leaders including: Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan; Wavel Ramkalawan, President of the Republic of Seychelles; João Manuel Lourenço, President of the Republic of Angola; Hakainde Hichilema, President of the Republic of Zambia; Nana Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana; Yoweri Museveni, President of the Republic of Uganda; Surangel Whipps Jr., President of the Republic of Palau; Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, President of the Republic of Mozambique; Aziz Akhannouch, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Morocco; Abiy Ahmed, Prime Minister of Ethiopia; and Tiemoko Meyliet, Vice President of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire.

During the opening ceremony, 10 winners of the Zayed Sustainability Prize from five continents were recognized for their achievements in driving innovative and scalable sustainability solutions. 
Other major events that took place throughout the week included the 13th IRENA Assembly, the supreme decision-making body of the International Renewable Energy Agency. IRENA members confirmed their readiness to support the UAE’s COP28 presidency and committed to leveraging international cooperation through the Agency’s global platform.

The Atlantic Council Global Energy Forum, which annually convenes the world’s top energy and foreign policy decisionmakers hosted its seventh meeting at ADSW. Guests including H.E. Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, the Rt. Hon. Grant Shapps MP, Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy for the UK, John Kerry, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, and Bernard Mensah, President of International for Bank of America discussed the geopolitical and geo-economic implications of the energy transition.

The flagship ADSW Summit brought together global decision-makers and thought leaders in sustainability to discuss innovative pathways to net zero, practical solutions to finance climate action, and transformative tech for food and energy security. The event featured past and present leaders of COP, including H.E. Razan Al Mubarak, the UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP28, H.E. Laurent Fabius, President of France’s Constitutional Council, H.E. Sameh Shoukry, Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and COP27 President, and Simon Stiell, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC. Collectively they highlighted the need to build on past successes and leverage the COP process to deliver on the Paris Agreement, ahead of the UAE’s hosting of COP28 and the highly anticipated Global Stocktake. 

The inaugural Green Hydrogen Summit was also held during ADSW. Hosted by Masdar’s green hydrogen business, the Summit convened more than 50 leading global hydrogen players, gathering key representatives across regulation, policy and the green hydrogen value chain.

Masdar, the host of ADSW, announced multiple global projects and agreements showing it is on track to meet the target of 100 GW of clean energy by 2030. These included up to 5GW of renewable energy projects with three African nations under the Etihad 7 UAE-backed funding umbrella. 

Also announced were agreements with the Kyrgyz Republic’s Ministry of Energy to develop renewable projects with a capacity of up to 1 GW, an agreement with the Kazakhstan Investment Development Fund to develop a wind power plant with up to 1 GW capacity, and an agreement with Azerbaijan state oil company SOCCAR to develop up to 4 GW of renewable energy projects. 
A first wave of investment of US$20 billion was also announced as part of the US-UAE Partnership to Accelerate Clean Energy (PACE), with Masdar and a consortium of US private investors leading the funding and development of 15 GW of clean energy projects in the US by 2035. 

ADSW provided a platform for engaging and empowering young people and women in sustainability in the lead-up to COP28. The Youth 4 Sustainability (Y4S) Hub brought together more than 3,000 leaders, experts, entrepreneurs, and young delegates to discuss ways to advance youth engagement across climate action. The annual Women in Sustainability, Environment and Renewable Energy (WiSER) Forum hosted influential figures from around the world for a roundtable discussion on ‘Empowering Women to Lead Climate Adaptation’. 

Returning to an in-person format this year, Abu Dhabi Global Market hosted the fifth edition of the Abu Dhabi Sustainable Finance Forum to conclude the week’s events. It convened 50 global institutional investors, government leaders, regulators, and financial institutions.

ADSW was supported by the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy, COP28 UAE, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, TAQA, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi, Mubadala Investment Company, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, General Electric, The Climate Pledge, Investcorp, Expo City Dubai, TotalEnergies, Abu Dhabi Convention & Exhibition Bureau, Schneider Electric, 1PointFive, Fertiglobe, PepsiCo, Emirates Development Bank, HSBC, Baker Hughes, BEEAH, UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, Ne’ma, Emirates Water and Electricity Company, McKinsey and Etihad Airways.