Abu Dhabi Hopes Green City Will Serve As Global Blueprint

Abu Dhabi–Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy initiative, will invest $22 billion to make the city a carbon-neutral, waste-free example for the rest of the world, the Financial Times reports.Abu Dhabi also committed $15 billion to alternative energy projects–including solar and hydrogen power plants and solar panel manufacturing sites–outside of the car-free Masdar City. Slated to house 50,000 residents by 2016, the city will be designed by Foster & Partners architects. Masdar will maximize the traditional architecture of ancient Middle East towns to increase energy efficiency and will use 75 percent less electricity and half the water most cities do–a savings equal to $2 billion in oil costs over a quarter century. In addition, the city will need almost no landfill space.The city’s developers hope that learning about alternative renewable energy sources will help solidify the UAE’s place in the energy business as oil supplies deplete. Because of a focus on cars, air conditioning and excessive water use, the UAE has one of the worst environmental reputations in the world, according to the Times. “Masdar City will become the world’s hub for future energy,” Masdar’s chief executive Sultan al-Jaber told the Times. “By taking sustainable development and living to a new level, it will lead the world in understanding how all future cities should be built.”