The provision of clean technologies or cleantech as its more commonly referred to, are becoming increasingly in demand across the MENA region as countries across the Gulf focus on the need for embedding a sustainability focus into their national agendas.
“Countries across the Gulf have been setting ambitious sustainability goals on the generation of energy especially with the investment in large solar parks garnering the natural resource of all-year-round sun, through to actions to conserve energy to become more energy-efficient and reduce their carbon footprints” said Róisín White Barrett, Market Advisor for the MENA region.
With Ireland fast becoming an international hub for the global cleantech market, Irish companies are best placed to partner with both public and private sector organisations across the Gulf to offer their world-leading innovative solutions to become more sustainable.
Over the past decade, the global cleantech sector has grown substantially, and Ireland is playing an important role in contributing to a sustainable region and world. Irish international exports from the sector increased by $85 million in 2019 to $535 million compared to the previous year. Not only is this good news for the Irish economy, which saw a 9 per cent increase in cleantech jobs created last year, it means innovative Irish cleantech is having a global impact, helping to build a better, more sustainable world.
It is companies such as Enterprise Ireland backed NuLumenTek who export globally from their Cork headquarters who are playing a key part of this growing and important sector for Ireland. As a provider of sustainable, smart, and energy LED lighting solutions, NuLumenTek since 2012 has delivered some of the largest retrofits lighting projects in Ireland and the Middle East. NuLumenTek’s Managing Director, Jim Healy, views the Gulf region as a key strategic market of importance for the long term future of the company and has established offices in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Having recently just completed one the largest LED lighting retrofits in the Middle East for Almarai, the Gulf’s largest dairy firm, NuLumenTek designed, manufactured, and supplied energy-efficient LED lighting systems to cover approximately 200,000 square meters of manufacturing facilities for central processing plant for dairy products.
In total 37,000 lights were installed by NuLumenTek along with over 40,000 lights being replaced, generating annual energy savings of approximately 20 gigawatt-hours. More than 14 million kilograms of carbon were reduced as part of the project which equates to the removing of the carbon footprint left by 3,000 cars.
These solutions are both good for the environment and have a significant impact on reducing a company’s utility bills, proving to be a win-win situation. In the case of the Almarai project, the annual estimated savings achieved are valued at $1.5 million and is expected to generate lifetime savings of approximately more than $15 million over ten years.
In the wider sustainability agenda and the drive to become carbon net zero or net positive in the Gulf region, there are clear opportunities for Irish cleantech solution companies to demonstrate the Irish Advantage with their innovation in the sector.
Commenting on the opportunity, NuLumenTek’s Managing Director, Jim Healy, said that, “The fastest way to net-zero is to become much more energy-efficient. If we look at the majority of the building stock in the region, it is easy to identify ways to reduce their energy use by 50% through a range of optimisation options such as the integration of monitoring, smart controls, and technology upgrades to lighting and heating, ventilating, and air conditioning systems”.
With the Gulf region being a priority market for Ireland, more and more Irish companies will be best placed to provide cleantech solutions across the region to help form a better working world for generations to come.