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U.A.E., Qatar Seek UN Credits to Shrink CO2 Footprints (Update1)
2010-12-01 05:18:05.659 GMT

(Updates with Kuwait CO2 capture plans in 11th paragraph.)

By Ayesha Daya and Mathew Carr
Dec. 1 (Bloomberg) -- The United Arab Emirates and Qatar
are seeking United Nations credits to develop alternative-energy
projects and cut the world's most-intensive emissions.
Masdar, a renewable-energy company based in Abu Dhabi,
plans to get tradable emission credits for solar and waste-heat
projects by next year under the UN's Clean Development
Mechanism, a company spokesman said in an e-mail last week.
State-run Qatar Petroleum said it expects credits for reducing
the flaring of a greenhouse gas linked to global warming.
Qatar and the U.A.E., ranked as the biggest emitters per
capita, are members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting
Countries with economies reliant on oil and gas. While they may
be the first Persian Gulf crude producers to get UN credits,
OPEC is lobbying the world's second-biggest carbon market to
recognize technology to bury carbon dioxide rather than halt
greenhouse gases altogether. Almost 200 nations are meeting this
week in Cancun, Mexico, for UN climate-protection talks.
"The oil and gas industry has a very high carbon
footprint, as do oil nations, but projects in the sector are
very hard to justify as deserving of carbon credits," said
Martin Kruska, director of carbon-asset development at Bad
Vilbel, Germany-based First Climate Group. "You have to show
that the project wouldn't be feasible without the additional
income from the credits."

Carbon Capture

Saudi Arabia voiced support at the most-recent OPEC meeting
in Vienna for UN recognition of carbon capture and storage. The
process involves piping emissions into underground storage or
aging oil fields before they escape into the air.
Abu Dhabi, the capital city that holds almost all the
U.A.E.'s oil reserves, qualified for UN credits known as
offsets, designed to encourage richer countries to finance
carbon-reductions in developing nations. China and India
together have supplied 68 percent of UN offsets for far.
The two UN registered projects in Abu Dhabi stand to
receive 2.5 million credits through 2018. With UN Certified
Emission Reductions known as CERs trading today at 11.67 euros
($15.18) a ton on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London, the
U.A.E.'s credits would be valued at about 29.2 million euros.
Lacking the natural gas used to generate most of the
electricity in Qatar, Abu Dhabi is building solar and nuclear
plants to meet power demand forecast to double to 40,000
megawatts by 2020. With a target of getting 7 percent of its
power from renewable sources by 2015, Abu Dhabi is replacing
diesel-based generation, which costs four times as much as
making power from gas.

World's Largest Emitters

Qatar has signed up a project to capture wasted natural gas
at its Al-Shaheen oil field and may get credits before the
U.A.E. "Qatar is one of the leaders in these carbon credits,"
Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, Qatar's energy minister, said in
a Nov. 8 interview in Doha.
Iran and Saudi Arabia also have projects in the UN
pipeline. Ecuador is the only OPEC member to advance to the
stage of issuing CERs.
Kuwait may seek credits through Equate Petrochemical Co., a
venture between Dow Chemical Co. and government-owned
Petrochemical Industries Co., which plans to capture 450 tons of
CO2 daily from existing facilities starting 2012.
Abu Dhabi and Qatar are the world's two largest emitters
per capita, the World Wildlife Fund said in an October report.
It takes about 8.1 hectares (20 acres) of forest to absorb the
annual carbon emissions of the average Qatari, according
calculations by the environmental lobby groups WWF and Global
Footprint Network. The figure is almost identical in the U.A.E.,
while the average is 5.4 hectares for North Americans and 1.2
hectares for Chinese.
Abu Dhabi forecasts its new solar power plant will cut
emissions by an initial 57,092 tons between 2009 and 2011 and
174,977 a year from 2012 to 2018, its project document shows.
The city has asked for an estimated 119,069 metric tons of
credits annually from 2009 to 2018 for recovering waste heat,
according to the web site of the UN Framework Convention on
Climate Change.

For Related News and Information:
Top Gulf stories: TOP GULF <GO>
Top energy stories: ETOP <GO>
Emission market news: NI ENVMARKET <GO>

--With assistance from Catherine Airlie in London, Ewa
Krukowska in Brussels and Robert Tuttle in Doha. Editors: Mike
Anderson, Stephen Cunningham.

To contact the reporters on this story:
Ayesha Daya in Dubai +971-4-364-1023 or
Mathew Carr in London at +44-20-7073-3531 or

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Steve Voss at +44-20-7073-3520 or sev@bloomberg.net