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World Utilities Congress showcases sustainable power and water solutions

The WUC featured a Strategic Conference, Technical Conference, and the Nuclear Energy Forum. (Image source: WUC)

Sustainably sourced power and water was the highlight at the World Utilities Congress, held from 8-10 May

The event, hosted by Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA), was held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. The second edition of the WUC addressed the role power and water play in supporting decarbonisation of industry.

At the session Geopolitics and water-energy security: assessing impact, speakers discussed how worldwide events shifting the energy supply and demand dynamics are affecting the reliability and affordability of supply. 

Panellists included HE Awaidha Murshed Ali Al Marar, chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy (DoE); HE Walid Fayad, minister of energy and water for Lebanon and HE Alberto Pimentel Mata, minister of energy and mines for Guatemala.

At the panel discussion titled Decarbonising cities, city planners and professionals in the energy sector came together to discuss the crucial role that urban settings play in facilitating the energy transition. Given that cities are responsible for a sizable percentage of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, the panellists discussed ways to integrate renewable energy, technology advancements, and reduced electricity and water consumption into urban design to reduce carbon emissions.

Sylvie Jehanno, Dalkia Group CEO, said during the session, “At Dalkia, our main goal is to consume less and consume more efficiently by producing low-carbon energy and adopting sustainable solutions. Digitalisation plays a key role, and we ensure to apply data management and connected solutions to achieve our goals.

“There are three important points to consider; firstly is the implementation of innovative technologies that are more efficient and advanced. The second are policies and frameworks for each country that support an ambitious long-term target strategy or goal; the Middle East is an example with its net zero target. The third pillar is skill refinement, decarbonising cities creates many jobs, and there is a need for highly-qualified engineers, technicians, and young talents.” 

A global panel discussion titled Hydrogen - putting the pieces of the puzzle together focused on the expanding importance of hydrogen in the sustainable future of utilities. Leaders from the rapidly growing hydrogen industry around the world had a discussion on the advantages, costs, and ramifications of using it to power future utilities.

During the session, Gavin Rennick, president of SLB New Energy, said: "From a global technology company’s perspective, it’s crucial to focus on high impact use cases, embedded efficiency, and performance. At SLB we are working closely with high emissions industries including steel and ammonia to develop customised low carbon solutions. These industrial processes often lend themselves to, and will benefit greatly from hydrogen-based solutions.”