China's Silk Road fund invests in Dubai solar plant
China’s Silk Road fund will invest in the largest solar power project in the world, it has been announced.
The fund is set to acquire a 24% stake in the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) Concentrated Solar Park (CSP). The project is part of the Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, which is the biggest single-site solar park in the world. The monetary value of the investment is as yet undisclosed.
The capacity of the whole park is 700MW with this set to increase to 1000MW by 2020 and 5000MW by 2030. The park, which is owned by a consortium led by ACWA Power, is set to save 2.4mn tons of carbon dioxide per year.
Paddy Padmanathan, CEO of ACWA Power, said according to CNBC: “The introduction of a new investor into the DEWA CSP is absolutely in link with ACWA Power’s established strategy of sharing investments with value adding partners who will in turn bolster our projects.
“We could not have found a more capable partner than Silk Road Fund to complement DEWA and us on what is the largest single renewable energy project underway in the world today.”
According to Arabian Business, he added: “This co-investment is also in keeping with our investment strategy of efficiently deploying our own capital to retain a meaningful level of equity interest in each project that is sufficient to permit us to be the long-term investor with de facto control over the investment and for us to remain focused on reliably delivering electricity and desalinated water at low cost.”
All but two UK regions failing on school energy efficiency
Most schools are still "treading water" on implementing energy efficient technology, according to new analysis of Government data from eLight.
Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil, cutting expenditure by 4.4% and 0.9% respectively. Every other region of England increased its average energy expenditure per pupil, with schools in Inner London doing so by as much as 23.5%.
According to The Carbon Trust, energy bills in UK schools amount to £543 million per year, with 50% of a school’s total electricity cost being lighting. If every school in the UK implemented any type of energy efficient technology, over £100 million could be saved each year.
Harvey Sinclair, CEO of eEnergy, eLight’s parent company, said the figures demonstrate an uncomfortable truth for the education sector – namely that most schools are still treading water on the implementation of energy efficient technology. Energy efficiency could make a huge difference to meeting net zero ambitions, but most schools are still lagging behind.
“The solutions exist, but they are not being deployed fast enough," he said. "For example, we’ve made great progress in upgrading schools to energy-efficient LED lighting, but with 80% of schools yet to make the switch, there’s an enormous opportunity to make a collective reduction in carbon footprint and save a lot of money on energy bills. Our model means the entire project is financed, doesn’t require any upfront expenditure, and repayments are more than covered by the energy savings made."
He said while it has worked with over 300 schools, most are still far too slow to commit. "We are urging them to act with greater urgency because climate change won’t wait, and the need for action gets more pressing every year. The education sector has an important part to play in that and pupils around the country expect their schools to do so – there is still a huge job to be done."
North Yorkshire County Council is benefiting from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which has so far awarded nearly £1bn for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects around the country, and Craven schools has reportedly made a successful £2m bid (click here).
The Department for Education has issued 13 tips for reducing energy and water use in schools.