Sunday, June 28, 2009

Can a Leopard Change Its Spots?

Masdar Clean Energy Deveopment
Abu Dhabi Offers $500M To Lure Clean Energy HQ

By Oliver Klaus



DUBAI (Zawya Dow Jones)--Oil-rich Abu Dhabi is betting that $500 million worth of funding will persuade the International Renewable Energy Agency, or IRENA, to locate its headquarters in one of the Mideast's largest oil producers.

The emirate is competing with Germany's former capital Bonn and Austrian capital Vienna to host IRENA, an organization formed earlier this year to become a key driver promoting the use of renewable energy worldwide.

"We will support IRENA with a total $136 million over the next six years, that's $22 million annually," Sultan Al Jaber, chief executive of Abu Dhabi Future Energy Co., or Masdar, told Zawya Dow Jones in an interview. Al Jaber is spearheading Abu Dhabi's bid to sweet talk IRENA.

But the U.A.E.'s green credentials are questionable. Residents of the desert state are among the world's most environmentally unfriendly, consuming more natural resources than anyone else on the planet, according to the World Wildlife Fund Living Planet report 2008.

Balance of article: The Wall Street Journal

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