Kuwait turns off the lights

Irony in action – a country awash in energy reserves is running out of energy.

It’s all very well cutting public sector working hours, as long as someone turns off the lights and AC when they leave at midday – if not, you’re just increasing the power that’s being used, as everything will stay on at work, as is the norm in the Gulf, whilst people go home and use more power in their uninsulated villas.

The Gulf countries could do so much more to save energy. Even before we talk about things like solar powered water heaters and the like on people’s roofs, simple things like doors that close properly would be a good idea.

The prime example of this is Mall of the Emirates – a building housing an indoor ski slope in the middle of the desert has lots of doors at its various entrances that don’t close automatically and aren’t well sealed when someone does bother to push them to.

Our building, two and a half years old, has no metered AC in the apartments, so there is no incentive to save energy. Front doors are not insulated, doors in public areas do not shut properly, lights are left on and have no timers or motion sensors.

It’s my understanding that the prevailing attitude up until now has been that energy is essentially a product being sold at a profit to consumers. There is no incentive to have people save it – you want your populace to use it. It might not be expensive, but you still want to shift volumes of Kilowatts you can make some money. This model can’t continue. My fear is that we’ll simply see prices go up in the Gulf, whilst landlords leave their buildings uninsulated and governments provide no incentives or assistance to ‘ordinary’ people to save energy.

My usual presentation to customers has a section on how my products save energy. Today in Beirut, the power supply obliged me by failing around about the slides on how we reduce power consumption. That helped reinforce the message.


One Response to “Kuwait turns off the lights”

  1. Sam Dubai Says:

    The first step for price rises has been taken with petrol. I also heard that dewa will phase out the electricity subsidies for locals down the line.

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