In February 2021, Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) announced the sale of 40,000 tonnes of their CelestiAL – aluminium produced with renewable solar power – to BMW Group.
The solar power used to produce EGA’s CelestiAL was procured from Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. DEWA supplied EGA with roughly 560,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of solar power over the course of a year which allowed EGA to generate 40,000 tonnes of aluminium. DEWA was issued I-RECs from the Dubai Carbon Centre of Excellence (also referred to as Dubai Carbon or DCCE), the approved I-REC Issuer in the UAE for each MWh of solar power energy produced.
Regarding the production of CelestiAL and reaching the UAE’s goals of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, EGA’s Executive Vice President of Environment, Health, Safety, Sustainability and Quality, Salman Abdulla, states,
“As a material, aluminium has an important role to play in the development of a more sustainable society. However, it also matters how sustainably aluminium is made. While Emirates Global Aluminium is focused on all aspects of sustainability, climate change is particularly important to the world. Over the decades ahead, the challenge for our industry is to get to net zero greenhouse gas emissions.
Earlier this year, we made a significant step forward by becoming the first company in the world to produce aluminium using the power of the sun. We were able to do this because the United Arab Emirates is significantly developing solar power in the country, and because we can use I-RECs to track and trace our use of solar power, which we source from Dubai Electricity & Water Authority’s Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. Our first customer for our CelestiAL solar aluminium was BMW Group, and the project is exciting our whole industry. Over the years ahead, we expect to increase our use of solar power as part of our contribution to solving the climate change challenge we all face.”
The successful production and sale of EGA’s CelestiAL to BMW demonstrates the potential for significant expansion into renewable produced commodities, the drive towards sustainability and the reduction of emissions produced in association with aluminium smelting, and the benefits of implementing a robust attribute tracking system to ensure the development of a renewables market.
The I-REC Standard Foundation applauds the work of all the organizations involved and is actively looking at this step in light of the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism agreed upon by the EU for emission-intensive imported goods.