GCC countries share a climate that regularly exceeds 45 degrees Celsius, and have densely populated cities that place high demands on energy resources. To counter these high temperatures, the Middle East region is currently heavily dependant on the cooling provided by air conditioning. Published data states that as much as 70% of the power used during peak times can be attributed to cooling systems.
Distributing heating or cooling to multiple locations from one generator source is not a new concept and their have been numerous successful and sustainable projects globally that have proven both the feasibility and reliability of such schemes.
In the GCC, the UAE can boast successful examples of district cooling implementation to both residential and commercial developments, where close to 1 million tons of refrigeration capacity have been developed. However, some of these new district cooling schemes have been severely affected by the economic downturn, due to both financing structures and the close link between many of the district cooling providers and the master developers. On the other hand, many schemes are generating demand capacity and energy revenue in excess of AED 1.5 billion annually which will ensure healthy long-term district cooling utility business.
So, despite the bad press that district cooling has recieved recently, it still remains the most cost-effective and energy efficient solution to the cooling requirements of the region. It is critical, however that the mistakes are not repeated and that the perceived risks are mitigated prior to implementation. New regulations and preferential utility rates are also required to boost the district cooling industry.
George Berbari, a regional industry pioneer, stated that the industry is adapting fast to the new situation and has developed new engagement rules prior to any investment. Examples include insuring guaranteed anchor loads, avoiding investment in the networks and properly forecasting actual cooling demands.
In KSA, improved understanding of project economics, government legislation and the business environment can help to identify and mitigate the perceived threats to a cooling project's success. Combined with improved planning, design, maintenance and energy efficiency initiatives like co-generation, this will enable cost-efficiency, sustainability and energy savings.
The District Cooling Summit Saudi Arabia 2010, organized by IQPC Middle East, will provide a platform for benchmarking regional district cooling project best practice. Executive speakers from Saudi Tabreed, Chescor Capital, TAS, Kamstrup, Cool Tech, Baltimore Aircoil, Trane and Johnson Controls will share regional and international district cooling expertise and technology innovations. This outstanding four-day event will provide what many other events do not deliver: A 360 degree perspective from the client, contractor, consultant and solution provider.
The District Cooling Summit Saudi Arabia will take place 18-21 April 2010 at the Park Hyatt Jeddah, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. If district cooling is on your agenda for 2010 ensure that you join our VIP Client Guests from Modon and Knowledge Economic city to strive for excellence.