As an intern at Masdar Institute, I’ve witnessed firsthand how real and possible a drastically improved world is. Masdar serves as a real-life experiment of how our sustainable future might look like. Solar energy generated by a 10-megawatt solar photovoltaic plant as well as panels mounted on the institute’s buildings provide nearly all of the[.....]
Thousands of folding glass panels cover the southern facade of the Al Bahr Towers in Abu Dhabi (above). Reacting to sunlight, they form a protective skin to decrease interior solar gain. It’s a modern riff on the best known element of Arabic architecture, in play since the Middle Ages. Meet the modern mashrabiya.
Masdar is taking decisive steps to build Masdar City’s first private homes. Adding to existing and planned educational, retail and business facilities just outside of Abu Dhabi, the 500 new houses promise to be “super sustainable” and ready within the next two years.
Terrorists probably come to mind long before honey when people think of Yemen, but the raw Yemeni honey Balqees had for sale at the recent Masdar Festival was far and away the yummiest honey I ever put in my mouth.
Masdar City is starting to shape up with a roster of new buildings. Siemens recently completed their LEED Platinum headquarters, the new IRENA headquarters is in progress, and GE just opened their first Ecomagination Center in the city’s first commercial building – the Incubator Building.
When the Middle East eco-city developers from Masdar approached David Ardill, Partner and Design Director at Sheppard Robson, to design Siemens’ new corporate headquarters at Masdar City, the architect said it was the most challenging brief he had ever encountered. Green Prophet visited the building this week for an exclusive tour.
Can there be more Masdars? Can this experimental eco-city be replicated in other Middle Eastern or North African countries that don’t have Abu Dhabi’s immense oil wealth? Green Prophet put this question to Anthony Mallows, Director of Masdar City, and Chris Chi Lon Wan, City Design Manager, during a recent roundtable discussion.
This is the second year that Masdar has hosted Green Prophet at the World Future Energy Summit (WFES). Last year we visited Shams I, the world’s largest CSP plant, more state-of-the art green buildings at Masdar City, and we saw an Estidama green villa prototype.
There’s something so satisfying about watching the seed of an idea turn into something real – like GE’s Ecomagination Center unveiled at Masdar City outside of Abu Dhabi today.
Online retailer Amazon grabbed headlines with their plan to build a biosphere inside transparent glass orbs which will house its Seattle – based workforce and a forest of plants. Interiors will feature “botanical zones” modeled on earth’s mountain ecologies.
The Swiss-made Zerotracer motorbike strutted its super efficient stuff at Masdar City and the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi last week. Designed by Tobias Wülser as part of his thesis project at the Academy of Art and Design in Aarau, the globe-trotting electric vehicle that “wears its own helmet” traveled around the globe in just 80[.....]
On a VIP media tour of the zero-carbon city Masdar, Tafline unveils these new pics of the stunning green oasis in the desert A lot has happened at Masdar City since our first visit two years ago. Back then the “zero carbon, zero waste” development received a pile of bad press for falling short of[.....]
If you’ve been to Dubai or neighboring emirate Abu Dhabi in the middle of summer, you’ve not only experienced a kind of heat that drains the life force from your pores, but you will also recall the bone-freezing experience of walking into any public building during these same months. Counteracting soaring outdoor temperatures with overactive[.....]
Abu Dhabi’s stellar efforts to raise green performance across industry sectors position that Gulf state as regional leader in both conceiving sustainable solutions, and more critically, setting them in action. There are some more famous projects like the multi-million dollar zero-energy city Masdar. But this is just the tip of the bucket. Read on for[.....]
Abu Dhabi cars to run on compressed natural gas. The Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA) has converted 20 vehicles in its fleet of 500 to run on compressed natural gas (CNG). It’s part of their commitment to reduce harmful emissions and their press release says they’ll convert about 20% percent of the total fleet[.....]
The LEED-hopeful Siemens headquarters in Masdar City has been awarded the coveted 2012 MIPIM future projects award. It wasn’t long ago that the first batch of photographs depicting the new Siemens headquarters made its way through the virtual world, but the LEED Platinum-hopeful building designed by Sheppard Robson has already scooped a coveted architecture award,[.....]
The new Siemens Headquarters in Masdar City will be 65, 617 square feet when completed by the end of this year. We recently reported that Siemens has teamed up with Masdar to develop a new generation of sand-resistant solar panels that will make more sense for desert environments, and that building the firm’s Middle Eastern[.....]
Ziad Tassabehji is one of the most influential men in the new green Middle East. Until now he’s kept pretty quiet about his involvement in Masdar. He came from the dot-com market with a boom and a bust, but in the Arab world. Ziad Tassabehji (pictured above with his son) has always been an entrepreneur[.....]
This Foster & Partner’s project completed in 2004 is green and deeply respectful of its environment – why did they change their design approach? In 2004, Foster & Partners completed this gorgeous Chesa Futura apartment building in Switzerland using a combination of modern modeling tools and ancient construction techniques. Situated on the edge of a[.....]
Masdar will break ground on a new Facade Test Center in a few months. It will research the most energy efficient building materials on the market. Masdar is constantly reinventing itself in order to ensure that the Gulf’s first genuine low-energy and low-carbon building project succeeds, and its latest reincarnation may well become one of[.....]
2011 was a big year for the Middle East – not only politically but also environmentally. Step in to see 10 of our most popular stories. Much has been said about the great political upheavals that swept through the Middle East in 2011 – some for good and some for nought – but less attention[.....]
The Masdar buildings that have been realized are impressive, but they comprise a shadow of the original, grandiose plans Everybody loves to criticize the Abu Dhabi state-owned energy company Masdar, which has been forced to eat humble pie on numerous occasions for failing to realize the grandiose zero carbon, zero emissions city promised to the[.....]
A one-year investigation by researchers will hopefully reveal what incentives are most likely to encourage energy and water conservation among Masdar’s student body. There’s nothing sinister about it really. Masdar City in Abu Dhabi is aiming for carbon neutrality in an unforgivingly hot and dry environment teeming with young students. Naturally these twenty-somethings – among[.....]
Oil and gas companies believe that CCS will allow fossil-burning to continue unabated, but health leaders expose the potential for widespread human fatalities in the event of accidental leaks. The United States Department of Energy has pledged to match Masdar’s $700,000 carbon capture research program with $3 Million of US taxpayer money. In collaboration with[.....]
Providing a progress report, Masdar City’s 10 megawatt plant is already a net exporter of energy, saving 24,000 tons of CO2 emissions, an equivalent of taking 3,300 cars off Abu Dhabi’s roads. This month was its 2 year anniversary.
Dr. Abdul Aziz bin Ali Al Nuaimi, known as the Green Sheikh, at the Mina Al Salam hotel in Dubai. It isn’t often that I eat dates, drink coffee, and wax green with a Sheikh from Ajman. But yesterday I did. Known around the world as the Green Sheikh, Abdul Aziz bin Ali Al Nuaimi[.....]
Director of the Masdar City PRT project, Robbert from 2getthere talks to Green Prophet about Masdar’s modest fleet of driverless pod cars. Hundreds of people lined up to experience Masdar City’s PRT at the first [email protected] (see our exclusive Masdar pictures), and Robbert was ready to answer their questions! A friendly face behind the enigmatic[.....]
The Managing Director of dwp design in the United Arab Emirates discusses Abu Dhabi’s future at the opening day of Interiors UAE. Abu Dhabi is in a fantastic position to design for the people, according to a leading design professional. Brian Hillesdon, the Managing Director of dwp design in the UAE discussed Dubai’s uni-fuctional building[.....]
Come sun or more sun, Sabeen Ahmed intends to keep growing the Middle East’s first fair trade store. Along with other vendors, Sabeen Ahmed set up her little eco-booth for the first time at Masdar City’s Street Fair and Organic Market last Friday. The first to introduce Fair Trade to the Middle East, she normally[.....]
The first Masdar city Market Street Fair and Organic Market was a huge hit among expats and Emiratis! Green Prophet was there. See exclusive pictures below. Hundreds of expatriates and Emiratis attended Masdar City’s first Market Street Fair and Organic Market this past Friday. A friendly family affair complete with cotton candy, clowns, and princess[.....]
Tafline finally gets to sink her teeth into the United Arab Emirates’ eco-scene, and wants to meet all the groovy green folks during her three week stay! Yours truly is touring the United Arab Emirates’ green scene on Green Prophet’s behalf and wants to see you! After a very brief but incredibly well-serviced flight from[.....]
The Superbus can carry well-to-do passengers in comfort and speed With the “whish” of a passing Formula 1 race car, and an almost silent “whrr” of its rear mounted electric engine, the new Dutch engineered 23 passenger Superbus amazed spectators during a test run at Abu Dhabi’s futuristic Masdar City, reports The National. The 15[.....]
Chris Turner from MNN argues that Copenhagenization is the more humble, more widely applicable approach to making cities livable, but there’s something about Masdar he didn’t think to address We spotted an excellent article over on Mother Nature Network that analyzes the fundamental philosophical differences between the Copenhagen model and Masdar City. Touted as the[.....]
Eco-tourists can visit Masdar City without a press pass. If you happen to be in the Abu Dhabi neighborhood, let’s say at the end of April, why not head over to Masdar City’s open house? Well, it’s not exactly a city yet, but as the first residents of this purported zero-carbon city move in, Masdar[.....]
One lucky reader will have a chance to eat with a green prophet… maybe. Tonight, one amazing eco-minded reader will have the opportunity to enjoy a delicious baba-ghanoush dinner at Masdar City with one of our very own green prophets. And yes, Israeli porno is on the menu. If you believe that, then I’m afraid[.....]
Would the Na’vi people feel at home at Masdar? The acclaimed Hollywood director James Cameron, creator of the powerful green message movie Avatar, was in Abu Dhabi recently to tour Masdar. Unsurprisingly to me, with his green perspective, he had some very positive things to say. Hollywood’s greenest director was given a comprehensive overview of[.....]
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, VP for UAE & ruler of Dubai, presented South Korean President Lee Myung-bak with the Zayed Environmental Prize. Named after the late UAE President Sheikh Zayed, the $1 million Zayed Environmental prize is awarded biannually to political leaders, scientists, and activists who are leading the way in sustainable initiatives. Najib Saab, the[.....]
When the PRT plan at Masdar was scrapped, what exactly did we lose? The folks at Singularity Hub offer an interesting analysis of Masdar’s PRT failure. Why is it, David Hill wonders out loud, that we have made massive advancements in telecommunications but precious few in transportation? Masdar gave us the perfect opportunity to take the next[.....]
Masdar’s big recruitment drive started at the UAE embassy in Washington D.C. The success of Masdar City and future cities like Masdar depends in part on steering our budding youth away from aspirations to become the next bajillionaire Wall Street banker. Instead, we need to get them interested in the other green-lined path, in good[.....]
Who knew? Now you can get sushi and organic food delivered to your home, from Masdar City. But there is a caveat. When we think of Masdar City, we think of solar power and funky space-buildings. We think of desert and withering heat. And perhaps we dream that one day this city will be completed[.....]
Nabito Architects in Barcelona are negotiating with Abu Dhabi engineers to build these stunning sustainable skyscrapers. Dubai’s skyline is going to look increasingly dull compared to what is planned for Abu Dhabi. In addition to Masdar City and the Lunar Cubit energy-generating pyramids that won the Land Art Generator Initiative’s 2010 design competition, a new[.....]
Green Sheik and Michael Braungart at green event in Abu Dhabi. One of the most respected environmental activists in the Middle East, no sustainability conference is complete without H.H. Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al Nuaimi’s stamp of approval. So it is an enormous compliment that the “Green Sheikh” attended an event co-hosted by Abu Dhabi’s leading[.....]
These beautiful Palmwood® gates at the entrance of Masdar City help keep the hot desert winds at bay. What should the gates to the world’s most talked about carbon-neutral city look like? For starters, they should be built out of a material that is sustainable, and they should blend in with Foster & Partner’s high-tech/ancient[.....]
Masdar - the Eco-city - is home to the hottest and most energy efficient transport system in the world: The Personal Rapid Transit (pod car). The PRT is fast, powered by lithium batteries, driverless, can carry up to 10 people safely and looks oh so beautiful in the gleaming sun... Check out more here.
Minneapolis Rollerblade Inventor Wants Masdar Biking Monorail Skyways Why can’t getting around be as safe and comfortable as sitting in a car, and yet be something of a workout too? Scott Olson, the athletic Minnesota inventor of Rollerblades and the Rowbike, has come up with yet another way to do just that, and his company[.....]
The Zayed Future Energy Prize is like the Nobel Prize for solutions to climate change. An extremely select jury of international experts in climate change solutions, headed up by IPPC chairman, Nobel prizewinner Dr Pachauri, decided that the Danish wind giant Vestas should be the winner of this year’s Zayed Future Energy Prize, which honors[.....]
Iceland’s President Olafur Grimsson at Masdar conference:”Renewable Energy is the way of the future” Iceland is a small country which recently came into “prominence” when one of its volcanoes caused a huge volcanic ash cloud to ground commercial airline flights for nearly a month last spring. But all this potential energy is also resulting in[.....]
Clinton’s visit came one week before Abu Dhabi hosts its annual World Future Energy Summit. Green Prophet has presented a number of negative assessments of Masdar and Abu Dhabi’s ambitious efforts to build a carbon-free city. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton seems to have missed or dismissed these reports. During a visit to Masdar City[.....]
Since the hype clearly failed, Masdar and Foster and Partners have turned to the nuts and bolts of building a sustainable city instead. Masdar and Foster and Partners (F&P) have eaten several servings of humble pie in the last few months. After a barrage of criticism related to the costs and failed expectations of Abu[.....]
Masdar students will soon be able to take a break from their hot, clean energy studies for a workout and a swim. Despite widespread criticism leveled at its organizers (which has simmered down since reaching its zenith with a New York Times article earlier this year), the Masdar City project plods on. Still in the[.....]
An interview that is supposed to shed light on Masdar’s real progress does little more than reorganize the project’s rhetoric Following a recent New York Times article that at once lauds and mocks the infamous Masdar Project, and a new Masdar Institute student’s claim that she feels like she is “living on a spaceship,” Middle[.....]
American engineering student Laura Stupin spends her first week on Masdar’s Mothership. Never mind the trumped up press releases that claimed for Masdar a zero carbon, zero waste, car-free city, or the derisive press that followed. And forget the original ambition to complete such unrealistic goals by 2015. Fast-forward instead to October, 2010, just over[.....]