There are few similarities between New Zealand (NZ) and the United Arab
Emirates (UAE). The first being a nation of two islands, soaring mountains
and extensive annual rainfall. By comparison, the UAE borders on the Persian
Gulf, has sweeping deserts and remains dry most of the year. The political
systems and cultures are as different as night and day.
Yet, both countries have similar advocates and plans for energy development.
Most "Kiwis" live on the north island, while most of the NZ
energy resources lie on the south island. For many years, the solution
has been a high-voltage
transmission network delivering hydropower and geothermal energy from
Queenstown to Auckland across the Cook Strait. This remains a perfect
island state model for the GENI Initiative around the world.
On the other hand, the UAE has been an isolated Arab nation for years,
using oil and gas to fire its energy requirements. Now after a decade
of planning, the UAE
will finally interconnect their power grid with that of Saudi Arabia and
the Gulf States Coordinating Council. Just as important, the UAE recently
opened its first wind farm. They are also opening a massive solar cell
production plant in a region that is perfectly suited for solar electric
and hot water production.
Our world is wonderfully diverse in culture, geography and political
style. Yet, grid technology and its benefits are helping to tie us
together in mutually interdependent solutions. As the NZ expert stated,
grid is like the road" B
and it's essential if you want to tap abundant renewable energy resources
in remote locations and deliver clean energy to all people.