(EnergyAsia, August 23 2013, Friday) — State-owned Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has issued a request for tenders for the construction of the emirate’s first clean coal-fired power plant that could generate 12% of its total electricity demand.

Coal will become an important component of Dubai’s energy mix under the ‘Integrated Energy Strategy’ plan to 2030 to reduce dependence on oil and gas.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, DEWA’s managing director and CEO, said the 1,200MW plant will be the first in the Middle East to utilise clean coal technology. The project will be completed in two 600MW phases, with the first plant due for start-up by 2020, and the second a year later.

Under the 2030 plan, Dubai will derive 12% of its energy from clean coal, 12% from nuclear, 5% from solar power, and 71% from natural gas.

In July last year, DEWA announced it had selected McKinsey & Company, engineering specialist Black & Veatch, and law firm Allen & Overy as consultants to produce a technical and economic study for the proposed clean coal-fired power plant.

The consultants provided an analysis on the technology, coal and sourcing strategies, DEWA’s logistics and infrastructure requirements, as well as environmental impacts on the emirate. The study also covered the technical and business specifications related to the plant’s development.

DEWA said the consultants were selected after it launched a world-wide tender that attracted bids from at least 16 national and international consultancy companies.

In June this year, DEWA said it signed a memorandum of understanding with First Solar to develop a programme to train engineers and technicians on solar energy technology as part of Dubai’s green economy initiative and the 2030 energy strategy.