Middle East exploring green technology

Sarah Gardner Jan 19, 2009
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Middle East exploring green technology

Sarah Gardner Jan 19, 2009
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Scott Jagow: The second “World Energy Summit” got underway today in Abu Dhabi.
An oil-rich powerhouse might seem like a strange choice for a summit on alternative energy. But when you look closer, not really. Sarah Gardner reports.


Sarah Gardner: Abu Dhabi sits atop 10 percent of the world’s oil. Yet leaders there and in other wealthy Mideast emirates are pouring billions into green technology. They’re building not only a zero-carbon city called Masdar, but funding research at universities in the U.S. and Europe.

Daniel Yergin, author of The Prize: the Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power, says even petroleum powerhouses like Abu Dhabi recognize renewable energy is gaining favor.

Daniel Yergin: And so I think they’ve decided to place a bet on it as part of their overall energy strategy and given the billions of dollars that they’re putting into Masdar and into looking for technology support I’d say that’s all a sign that they’re pretty serious about it.

UC Berkeley’s Dan Kammen says Abu Dhabi has the money to lead on clean energy, but it’s missing one thing:

Dan Kammen: You need to develop a intellectual infrastructure.

Kammen says Abu Dhabi’s yet to invest in green research at its OWN universities and think tanks.

I’m Sarah Gardner for Marketplace.

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