The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, visited Masdar City yesterday to learn about Abu Dhabi’s sustainable, low-carbon urban development that is fully powered by renewable energy. The visit was part of the Mayor’s trade mission to Abu Dhabi to forge closer ties between the two regions.
As part of his Masdar City tour, Johnson visited the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, a graduate level, research-oriented university focused on alternative energy and sustainability. The Mayor met with staff and students to discuss the research being undertaken to advance renewable energy and clean technologies. He was keen to the view the innovative design of Masdar City, its rigorous sustainability standards as well as its integration of energy-efficiency technology with passive and intelligent design.
“I am delighted to have seen Masdar City first-hand to understand more about Abu Dhabi’s ambitious plans for sustainable development. London is also working to apply low-carbon solutions such as our public bike hire scheme and retrofitting homes and offices to become energy efficient. These kinds of projects, along with initiatives such as decentralised energy supply, are helping to cut emissions and secure London’s energy future as well as create jobs and develop a green economy. My trip has confirmed there is much we can learn from each other’s efforts to ensure that future growth comes with full regard for our environment.” — Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
Masdar City, as a mixed-use special economic zone, implements best-in-class sustainable architectural practices, achieving a 56 percent reduction in energy use and a 54 percent reduction in water use. Companies and organizations establishing in Masdar City include Siemens, GE, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the International Renewable Energy Agency headquarters, the Global Green Growth Institute regional office, and others. The city’s buildings are constructed using sustainable materials such as recycled steel and aluminum, FSC-certified lumber and concrete made with recycled materials.
“The remarkable enthusiasm and personal commitment that Mayor Johnson has for sustainable development is clearly visible in his efforts across London. At Masdar, we share his core belief and welcome his efforts to improve the sustainable growth of cities.
Urban areas are responsible for the majority of the energy and water demand across the world, and as a result produce most of the world’s carbon emissions. That is why London and Abu Dhabi have made it a top priority to ensure that cities develop more sustainably.” — Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO and managing director of Masdar
Boris Johnson has a target to cut London’s carbon emissions by 60 percent by 2025 and there are a range of low carbon initiatives in place to make transport, homes and businesses more energy efficient in the city. Last year’s 2012 London Olympics and Paralympic Games were designed to high levels of sustainability. The Mayor is currently on a five-day visit to the Gulf region where he will visit Dubai and Abu Dhabi before moving on to Doha, Qatar. During the five-day trip, the Mayor has a series of high-level meetings with political, state and business leaders, including senior members of the Royal families in the region and sovereign wealth funds, and investment authorities.