Masdar City, that 100% carbon neutral eco-city being built in Abu Dhabi, is receiving well deserved attention not only from local environmentalists, but from many individuals and organizations located far from the unique ecological project.
The city currently under construction by an international consortium of construction and architectural firms which include the Australian architectural firm LAVA Architects, the renowned UK architectural firm Foster + Partners, America’s General Electric, and the German BASF construction company. The idea of an environmentally sustainable, and carbon neutral residential and business development has attracted great interest from companies like GE, which is also establishing an “ecomagination” research center in Masdar, like it already has in Niskayuna New York and Munich Germany.
Masdar City is still in the early construction phases, and it won’t be known how successful the project will be until it is finally completed, sometime between the year 2016 and 2020. In previous articles on Masdar City, Green Prophet writers have tried to point out both the plusses and minuses of such a project, including one that tries to determine whether the project will wind up being a “practical world community innovation or an expensive showcase”.
Whether one considers this $22 billion project an innovation or expensive showcase, there must be enough people who believe in its possibilities since the World Renewable Energy Agency has decided to be located in Abu Dhabi, and hence be part of the ideas behind Masdar City.
Also known as the International Renewable Energy Agency or IRENA for short, the location of Abu Dhabi was chosen during IRENA’s June conference in Sharem el Sheikh, Egypt.
To further international research into carbon-neutral projects and environmental sustainability within Abu Dhabi and other similar locations, a new research institute, the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology has been established with the assistance of the prestigious American academic institution the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The Masdar Institute has begun its tenure with an enrollment of 82 students from 16 countries.
The Masdar City project is one of several “eco city” projects being planned for various parts of the world, including China and the USA, and the concepts being conceived for these types of environments will be topics covered at the upcoming Abu Dhabi Future Energy Summit to be held in February, 2010.
Photo: Foster & Partners