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Electricity in United Arab Emirates in 2021

Global Ranking: #54
11.3% #152 Low-carbon electricity
1816.51 watts #7 Generation / person
437.50 gCO2eq/kWh #106 Carbon Intensity

In 2021, the United Arab Emirates chiefly relied on fossil fuels, specifically gas, for its electricity production, accounting for over 88% of the country's power. Just over 11% came from low-carbon energy sources, the bulk of which was generated by nuclear energy at around 7%, while about 4% of the country's electricity came from solar energy. This shows that there is still a strong reliance on fossil fuels in the UAE's power sector, with comparatively little contribution from low-carbon energy sources.


Looking at other countries, particularly those with similar climates and resources, there are several strategies the UAE could adopt to increase its proportion of low-carbon electricity. Drawing on the success of France, Slovakia, and Ukraine, which generate 66%, 61%, and 58% of their electricity from nuclear power respectively, the UAE could invest more into their nuclear energy facilities. Similarly, with a climate suitable for extensive solar energy generation, the UAE could look to the success of Greece, Australia, and Chile, who generate 19-18% of their electricity from solar power. Additionally, despite not having the highest percentage globally, wind power offers prospective growth for the UAE, as exemplified by Denmark's high yield of wind-generated electricity at 59%.


Charting the history of low-carbon energy in the UAE, prior to 2013, there was little to no electricity generated from solar energy. The first significant step was seen in 2013, with a modest effort in solar electricity generation at 0.1TWh. However, the decade following 2013 saw a steady rise in solar generation with an important leap in 2019 at 2.5 TWh. The advent of nuclear power in the UAE began only recently in 2020, with a production of 1.6 TWh, but it showed a dramatic increase by 2021, accounting for a substantial 8.9 TWh. This marks a pivotal development in the UAE's journey towards low-carbon electricity generation, demonstrating its capability and potential in embracing nuclear power - a highly efficient and sustainable means of electricity production.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Data Sources

For the years 1980 to 1984 the data source is EIA.
For the years 1985 to 2010 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the years 2011 to 2015 the data sources are Energy Institute and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 2016 to 2017 the data source is IEA.
For the year 2018 the data sources are IEA and IEA (imports/exports).
For the year 2019 the data source is Ember.
For the year 2020 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the year 2021 the data sources are Energy Institute and Ember (imports/exports).
For the years 2022 to 2021 the data source is Energy Institute.
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