UAE’s most efficient power plant commences operations
Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA), Mubadala and Dubal Holding achieved a key milestone with the first firing of the Siemens Energy H-class gas turbine at the new Dhs1 billion state-of-the-art power plant under development at EGA’s Jebel Ali site.
The Siemens Energy H-class gas turbine, a leading technology in efficient power generation, is the heart of the new power plant. Over the coming months, other facilities of the plant will be completed and integrated to achieve a generation capacity of over 600 megawatts of electricity. Full completion of the project is expected in the summer.
The new power block at EGA is being developed by JA Power & Water Co, a joint venture formed by Mubadala and Dubal Holding. EGA intends to buy power from the joint venture for 25 years following commissioning.
Use of the H-class gas turbine will further improve the efficiency of power generation at EGA, saving natural resources and reducing costs and environmental emissions.
The installation of an H-class turbine aligns with the UAE Energy Strategy 2050, which aims to reduce the nation’s carbon footprint of power generation by 70% and to increase energy efficiency by 40%.
The new power block is expected to lower greenhouse gas emissions from EGA’s power-generation and aluminium-smelting operations at Jebel Ali by some 10%, the equivalent of planting more than 17 million trees each year.
Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) emissions are expected to decrease by as much as 58%. NOx is also emitted by motor vehicles and is amongst a group of emissions targeted for reductions under ‘UAE Vision 2021’ to improve local air quality.
The NOx emissions reductions expected because of the new power block are equivalent to removing more than 850,000 cars from the road.
The project is the first time a Siemens Energy H-class gas turbine has been deployed in the global aluminium industry.
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of EGA, said: “This project which includes a leading technology in efficient power generation supports the objectives of the UAE Vision 2021 and the UAE Centennial 2071, which outlines the path for a brighter future for generations to come by making the UAE the world’s leading nation. We look forward to the successful completion of this project and for it to contribute to our nation’s prosperity for decades to come.”
Once the new power block is fully operational, five older, smaller, and less efficient turbines at EGA’s Jebel Ali site will be put on standby for use only in emergencies.
EGA requires electricity for aluminium smelting and other industrial operations. EGA runs power plants at its sites in Jebel Ali and Al Taweelah with a current combined generating capacity of 5,850 megawatts, making the company the largest power-producer in the UAE after the Dubai and Abu Dhabi utilities with a similar generating capacity to New Zealand.
Earlier this year, EGA announced with Dubai Electricity and Water Authority that it has made the UAE the first country in the world to produce aluminium using the power of the sun. DEWA is supplying solar power from the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park on the outskirts of Dubai. EGA is marketing solar aluminium to global customers under the product name ‘Celestial’.