ENEC and EPRI collaborate on decarbonisation report

19 December 2023

The UAE’s Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) and US-based Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) have collaborated on a report listing decarbonisation pathways for the upstream process in the oil and gas industry using nuclear energy. “While the global community is increasingly focused on reducing dependence on fossil fuels, these resources are anticipated to remain integral to the global economy for several decades,” said ENEC. “Fossil fuels not only provide essential feedstock for the chemical and plastics industries but also serve as a reliable, on-demand energy source for sectors where electrification poses significant challenges.” Some 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions are directly attributed to oil and gas production activities. “Therefore, decarbonising these processes is crucial for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and lowering carbon intensity of the upstream sector,” ENEC noted.

The report by ENEC and EPRI’s shows that the adoption of nuclear energy is key to providing consistent and large-scale clean electricity and hydrogen, necessary for both baseline power generation and for decarbonising energy-intensive industries. Alternate, carbon-free resources such as nuclear energy can supply the necessary electricity for upstream processes while reducing emissions. “Additionally, advancements in nuclear technology, including small modular reactors (SMRs), present innovative and viable pathways for a more sustainable and carbon-neutral energy future.” 

ENEC said it is at the forefront of the UAE’s ambitious decarbonisation efforts, particularly in addressing the challenges of hard-to-abate industries. “Central to these efforts is the deployment of advanced nuclear technologies, including the revolutionary SMRs and microreactors, under the ENEC ADVANCE Programme.…The move towards these innovative nuclear technologies represents a significant stride in the UAE’s commitment to achieving Net Zero by 2050, aligning with global environmental objectives while maintaining sustainable economic growth.” ENEC signed a raft of agreements with SMR developers during the recent UN climate conference, COP28, in Dubai.

Also at COP28, EPRI announced the launch of a new two-year project, SMARTargetsTM, that will develop a new methodology for setting greenhouse gas emission targets at the company-level. The SMARTargets initiative “will include a cross-sector stakeholder coalition with finance, non-governmental, and climate disclosure organisations providing input, EPRI noted.

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