Solar & Clean Energy

Conference Programmes

Find out more about our expert speakers or view all the session details below.  

Tuesday 16th April

14:00 - 14:05 | Welcome

MC: Yasin Kasirga,
Decarbonisation Leader - Middle East & Africa, GE Vernova 

14:05 - 14:20 | Keynote

H.E. Eng Sharif Al Olama, Undersecretary for Energy and Petroleum Affairs, Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure

14:20 - 14:40 | Presentation: The challenges of zero-hour – what will it take to run the grid with no gas generation?

Bruce Smith, 
Executive Director, Strategy and Planning, Emirates Water & Electricity Company

14:40 - 15:20 | Panel: Creating carbon-free
electricity grids

A carbon-free grid is a complex challenge that will need industry and governments to work together. It is not just about building more grid-connected clean energy and storage, and this discussion will investigate what flexibility and investment will be required around a future energy mix and the types of technologies needed to solve this challenge.

Moderator: Yasin Kasirga, Decarbonisation Leader - Middle East & Africa, GE Vernova 

Dr. Afif Saif Al Yafei,
CEO, Transco 

Dr. Shamma Al-Malek,
Strategy Development Director, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 

Luc Koechlin,
CEO Middle East, EDF Group

Dr. Ibraheem Almansouri, Director, Engineering, Masdar 

15:20 - 16:00 | Panel: Long distance transmission: Investing in multi-country corridors

Low-carbon, long-distance energy transmission will be of increasing importance to countries, as it offers advantages around efficiency, ability to manage fluctuations and can benefit communities that currently do not have access to a stable electricity supply. This panel will discuss the technical challenges to long-distance transmission using clean energy, whether east-to-west approaches make better use of renewable energy and if the levels of investment make these ambitions feasible? 

Moderator: Hind Almutawa, Senior Manager - IPPs & Production Planning Department, Dubai Electricity & Water Authority 

Omar Al Hashmi,
CEO, Transmission & Distribution, TAQA 

Yousif Al Ali, CEO, Etihad Water and Electricity 

Dietmar Siersdorfer, 
Managing Director Middle East & Africa, Siemens Energy

Simon Birkebaek
, Partner, BCG

Tom Foley, Future Energy Leader, EMEA, GHD 

16:00 - 16:15 | Case Study: UAE national geospatial platform for future energy 

What is the role of digitalisation of the grid for clean energy sources/energy storage. What regulation needs to be in place to ensure that required investments in digitalisation are made? 

Eng. Maryam Alshamsi, Sustainability Engineer, Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE 

16:15 - 16:30 | Presentation: Weathering the grid: What extreme weather means for the energy grid

Extreme weather puts additional strain on the electricity grid, both through increased demand and on the infrastructure itself. How do utilities ensure that equipment can cope with extreme events, does the GCC have an advantage that other regions can learn from and do rapid increases in clean energy use and plans for long distance transmission have implications?

Howard Wenger, President, Nextracker

CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight

16:30 | Manjusha Shelke, Rechargion

 | Gurjant Randhawa, Cipher Neutron

 | Matthias Rudloff, Ambartec

 | Malak Hamdan, VS Renewable Energy

Wednesday 17th April

10:30 - 11:20 | Panel: Energy decarbonisation: Tripling installed renewables by 2030 

Can ambitions to triple installed renewable energy in less than a decade be met? This panel will investigate what investment is required, if finance gaps can be met, what work is needed to prepare the grid, and the challenges that will need to be overcome, including meeting supply chain demand, to hit a 2030 deadline.

Moderator: Dr Najib Dandachi,
 CEO, Al Usul

Abdelmuti Murad, Head of Energy Strategies and Policies Division, Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE 

Bruce Smith,
 Executive Director, Strategy and Planning, Emirates Water & Electricity Company

Francois-Xavier Boul,
Managing Director Renewables MENA, Engie 

Carlos Gasco Travesedo, Executive Director, Energy Policy Sector, and Energy Policy Advisor, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy

Mohammad Jame, Vice President, Dubai Electricity & Water Authority  

11:20 - 11:35 | Presentation: Readying power grids for rapid renewable energy growth

Dr Ralf Blumenthal, 
Head, Siemens Grid Software Middle East & Africa

11:35 - 11:50 | Presentation: Ensuring momentum behind a just energy transition

A just energy transition was a core pillar of COP28 UAE, as countries seek to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels and move towards net zero options. But why is a just transition so important, what benefits will such an approach bring to local communities and how will this make a meaningful contribution to the global energy transition? This presentation explains. 

Riad Meddeb,
Director of Sustainable Energy Hub, United Nations Development Programme

11:50 - 12:15 | Fireside talk: Gas flexibility – its role as a transition fuel 

What is the role of gas as a transition fuel as country’s look to increase their installed renewables base? This discussion will look at where gas fits in a country’s energy transition, the role it will play as country’s move towards clean sources, how it can flex to meet intermittent, but frequent demands and where gas fits as part of the storage debate.

Moderator: Christopher Decker,
Partner, Energy & Natural Resources, Oliver Wyman

Alastair Mulligan, Director, Asset Management, Generation, TAQA

Andy Biffen, Executive Director of Asset Development, Emirates Water & Electricity Company

Otmane Benamar
, Chief Technology Officer, EMEA, GE Gas Power

12:15 - 13:00 | Panel: Future growth opportunities for long duration energy storage

As short-term storage becomes more prevalent thanks to the growth of PV and wind facilities, so too is the emergence of long duration energy storage (LDES). This panel will discuss the advancement of the various technologies (excluding lithium batteries) requirements around government regulation, and the role LDES will play as more inter-country grid connections are implemented.

Moderator: Bruce Gurfein,
CEO, Connect Group 

Frank Wouters,
 Chairman, MENA Hydrogen Alliance and Director, EU MED-GEM Network 

Upma Koul,
 Board Member, LDES Council and Vice President, Energy Storage, Sumimoto SHI FW

Dr Marco Terruzzin,
Chief Commercial and Product Officer, Energy Vault 

Shri Das,
Chairman & Managing Director, Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency 

CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight

13:00 | Alvaro Sousa, Chief Strategy Officer, Waterstuff Sun

 | Dr. Sahar Sam, Co-Founder, Solaires Enterprises

 | Linda Fanney Valgeirsdóttir, CEO, Alor

 | Maebh Reynolds, Founder, GoPlugable

MC: Toka Ahmed, Sustainability Consultant, Eedama 

14:30 - 15:10 | Panel: AI’s impact on energy systems

How will artificial intelligence and machine learning change the planning, running and monitoring of energy systems? Are the benefits such technologies bring real and significant, or simply fine-tuning what is already being done? And what are the examples that organisations can learn from – AI is a term easily dropped into a conversation, but this panel will showcase tangible examples of AI in use.

Moderator: Dr. Hassam Chaudhary, Assistant Professor, School of Energy,

Arturo Riveira,
VP Operations and Maintenance, Generation, TAQA  

Dr Morgan Eldred,
 Founder, Digital Energy

Pierre Samaties,
 Partner, Roland Berger

Sun Haiyan
, Representative, Shanghai New Energy Industry Association

Eng. Abdalla Talal Alhammadi, Sustainable Engineer, Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE 

15:10 - 15:30 | Fireside talk: A roadmap to circularity

Plant owners cannot wait until solar or wind facilities reach end of life to start thinking about circularity. However, that message has not yet gained widespread acceptance. The industry knows requirements to recycle will be in place by the time renewable energy plants need to be decommissioned, and in some cases for older PV facilities, it may make sense financially to update modules now. This discussion will explore what must be considered and how to prepare for circular requirements in the renewable energy sector.

Moderator: Dr Ibraheem Almansouri, Director, Engineering, Masdar 

Laurent Longuet
, CEO, SirajPower

Yeran Si, Technical Solution Director, Windey 

15:30 - 15:50 | Presentation: Mesia Solar Outlook report 

Moneef Barakat,
CEO, Solarabic and Board Director, Mesia 

15:50 - 16:30 | Panel: Module prices - long-term prospects as projects pressures rise?

PV projects are getting bigger, and as these schemes come to market, what pressure does this place on manufacturers. Are modules and panel prices likely to remain low, or do government policies globally signal future price rises - and what does this mean for costing projects? Equally, what are the prospects for the modules supply chain as more projects - including green hydrogen - hit the market?

Moderator: Moneef Barakat, CEO, Solarabic 

Joumana Hosri,
 CEO Middle East, Sacotel Znshine

Yin Guo
, Vice President, Solplanet

Xin Theo, Senior Head of Product, MEA, Trina Solar  

Mohamed Saady Dweik, Head of Technical Services & Product Management, Mena, Jinko Solar 

CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight

16:30 | Henning Syversen, CEO, Triton

 | Alfredo Saenger, COO & Co-Founder, Electrogenos

 | Matti Malkamaki, Founder, Hycamite

 | Anirudh Vengopal, Chief Technology Officer, HyET Group

 | Najwan Daifallah, Founder, Neomup / WiPlugEV

Thursday 18th April

10:30 - 11:10 | Panel: Investment needs to meet mini/micro grid-reliant communities

What investment in money, time and equipment is required to ensure the needs of off-grid or remote communities are met, particularly as these can often be poor communities where access to reliable energy can change their economic circumstances? This panel asks if the investment needed to transmit renewables over mini/micro grids has kept pace with generation capacities.

Moderator: Aarti Nagraj, Deputy Business Editor, The National 

Ali Nouri,
 CEO, Smart Energy

Mohammed AlTaani,
 Secretary General, Arab Renewable Energy Commission

Dr Nabih Cherradi, 
CTO, Desert Technologies and President, Solar United

Dr. Raul V. Rodriguez,
Vice President, Woxsen University 

11:15 - 11:30 | Case study: Empowering lives: The impact of solar electrification in off-grid regions 

This talk will illustrate how solar coupled equipment in off-grid communities can change lives, drawing on examples that are being implemented across Africa. It will highlight the types of opportunities that exist for solar to electrify different types of machinery and operations that in the past required a diesel generator, their reliability and the benefits they bring.  

John Van Zuylen, CEO, Africa Solar Industry Association 

11:30 - 11:45 | Case study: Clean energy as a pathway to net zero - Hydro pumping storage plant

An insight into the use of a hydro plant for storage in a desert country and its role in the energy transition. 

Yves-Laurent Beck
, Hydro Project Manager, EDF

11:45 - 12:00 | Presentation: Waste to plus: The alternative energy solutions from waste

This presentation will discuss alternative options such as Waste to Energy, Waste to SAF, Waste to Hydrogen and Waste to Biofuel.

Majed Saeed Al Marzouqi, Business Development Section Head, Tadweer Group

12:00 - 12:45 | Panel: Building a scalable hydrogen industry

How do countries build large-scale, long-term hydrogen sectors that are attractive to investors, governments and off takers alike? This is a key challenge faced by governments because such schemes require long-term financing with a business case to back them.

Moderator: Alejandro Longueira, Principal, Energy & Natural Resources, Oliver Wyman

Sergio Lopez Perez, Energy Transition and Markets Section Head,
Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 

Daniel Schwappach,
Head of Sustainable Energy Systems, Middle East & Africa, Siemens Energy 

Abhay Bhargava, Associate Partner and Regional Practice Leader - MEASA Energy & Environment Practice, Frost & Sullivan 

Yassir Ghiyati, Managing Director, EMEA, Topsoe

14:00 - 14:45 | Panel: The case for localised hydrogen use in hard to abate sectors

While much attention has focused on developing a hydrogen export market, what opportunities are available for in-country heavy industries? This panel will explore the benefits that a focus on local heavy industries bring, in terms of new products, and expanded sales markets. Equally, what threats could local heavy emitting sectors face if they ignore the opportunities presented by a plentiful stream of green hydrogen? 

Moderator: Olga Rudkovskaya, Sr. Manager, ESG & Sustainable Finance

Dr Dimitrios Dimitriou, Vice President of ESG & Sustainability, Emirates Steel Arkan

Wietse ter Veld, Hydrogen Lead, Middle East, AtkinsRéalis 

Michael Sronce, Managing Director & Vice President, Sargent & Lundy

Pratul Shinde, Vice President, Siemens Advanta Middle East 

Dr Arun Kumar, Professor of Practice in Chemical & Petroleum Engineering,
ADNOC Technical Academy 

14:45 - 15:05 | Case study: Abu Dhabi’s low-carbon policy roadmap

Carlos Gasco Travesedo, Executive Director, Energy Policy Sector, and Energy Policy Advisor, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 

15:05 - 15:50 | Panel: Advancing the commercial viability of green hydrogen

Governments are determined to take financial advantage of the evolving hydrogen economy, with various large-scale facilities being built.  But what is the near- and long-term commercial viability of low carbon hydrogen? Would rising gas prices motivate more countries to build green hydrogen facilities, eroding early advantages? And what is the global mechanism between off-take and production for financial success?

Moderator: Frank Wouters, Chairman, MENA Hydrogen Alliance and Director,
EU MED-GEM Network

Eng. Nawal Alhanaee, Director of Future Energy Department,
Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE 

Hamad Massod, Director Business Development- Green Hydrogen, Acwa Power

Francois Dao
, Senior Vice President, MEA, EDF Renewables

Tom Evans
, Origination Leader, GHD

15:50 - 16:05 | Case study: Carbon capture & storage

Hall 7

Presented by:
 Yasin Kasirga, Decarbonisation Leader - Middle East & Africa, GE Vernova 

16:05 - 16:30 | Panel: Boosting local green hydrogen electrolyser manufacturing capabilities

The bottleneck for scaling local green hydrogen manufacturing is the electrolyser. This panel will discuss how to accelerate and scale production so that it meets demand, and what research & development is underway to increase capacities and efficiencies.  

Moderator: Joumana Hosri, 
CEO Middle East, Sacotel Znshine

Daniel Schwappach, Head of Sustainable Energy Systems, Middle East & Africa, Siemens Energy 

Naji Masri, Director of Business Development & Sustainability, BASF

Alan Zhao, Director – Hydrogen, Fuel Cell & ePowerTrain,
Africa and Middle East Region, Cummins 

CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight

16:30 | Craig Knight, Founder, Horizon Fuel Cell

 | Mathieu Villani, Sales & Marketing Director, KHIMOD

 | Ranjit Gupta, Founder & CEO, Ocior Energy