Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) has launched the emirate’s rooftop solar scheme and released the supplementary information that was required further to Executive Council Resolution No. 46 of 2014. A 30kW instalment at Al Maktoum International airport was the first project to connect under this initiative, with a further 11 applications currently going through the approval process (both commercial and residential).

Further to our previous e-briefing regarding technical standards and application, to date 16 solar panel manufacturers have been approved by DEWA for use in the scheme alongside 19 contractors and consultants that have been approved and are undertaking the enrolment requirements. A list of all approved suppliers, contractors and consultants will be available on the DEWA website for customers in due course.

One of the previously unanswered questions was how the net-metering scheme would operate. DEWA has confirmed that this will be a fairly flexible scheme with no expiry on the period for which excess generation can be held against a consumer account, the excess will simply roll over into subsequent billing cycles. It was also confirmed that where there are multiple consumer accounts relating to one plot (as determined by Dubai Municipality) then the excess generation can be applied to multiple accounts subject to a successful application by the consumer.

DEWA will charge customers a one-off connection fee of AED 1,500 (please note that there may be further costs for systems with a generating capacity over 400kW) and customers will be required to contact an approved contractor/consultant to ascertain feasibility and establish the appropriate technical solutions, the contractor/consultant will then liaise with DEWA, submitting a no objection certificate and subsequently the PV design documents and application for DEWA’s approval.

There is certainly a great deal of interest in the initiative within the regional solar industry and the strong message coming from DEWA is that it will take all necessary steps to ensure the scheme is a success and is continuing to look at ways of further assisting all parties involved or seeking to be involved in the process from start to finish.