Austria’s participation in World Governments Summit 2024: Focus on renewables, AI, urban planning

VIENNA: Austria will be making its presence felt at the World Governments Summit 2024, due to open tomorrow in Dubai. The Alpine country is championing three key areas during the global event: transitioning to cleaner energy; developing artificial intelligence (AI); and advancing sustainable urban development. This report delves into these initiatives and highlights Austria's ambitious goals and achievements. Leading the Green Shift Austria is setting the bar high, aiming for climate neutrality within the next 16 years. This ambitious goal prioritises a renewable energy revolution, with a target of generating 100% of electricity from clean sources by 2030, according to Austria's 'Renewables Expansion Law' (EAG), which was adopted in March of 2021, and is considered a significant milestone toward the ambitious goal to produce 100% of the country's electricity from renewables by 2030. Currently, hydropower forms the backbone of Austria's energy mix, according to official figures released by the E-Control, t he Austrian energy regulator. However, the country is actively diversifying, expanding wind and solar power capacity to achieve its renewable energy targets. EAG is part of Austria's efforts to increase the share of renewables to 100% in 2030 from 75% currently. The country's scheme to support green electricity production was approved by the European Commission and payments under the scheme are estimated to total about EUR 4.4 billion until the end of 2032. To reach its 2030 goal, Austria needs an additional 27 TWh of electricity generation. Under the EAG, about 11 TWh should come from solar supported mainly by the initiative for one million photovoltaic rooftop installations across the country. Wind power and hydropower should add 10 TWh and 5 TWh, respectively, with biomass accounting for about 1 TWh. AI: A Tool for Progress Austria views AI as a powerful tool to address complex issues and create opportunities. Leveraging AI, the country aims to boost its economy, bridge labor shortages, and tackle skil led worker gaps. Austrian stakeholders, institutions, and private sector representatives are looking forward to learning about the latest developments in artificial intelligence technology at the World Governments Summit. Like the rest of the world, Austria is interested in developing AI technology to facilitate human life, create opportunities to solve previously intractable problems, and create new opportunities that contribute to economic growth. Austria's AI sector is experiencing remarkable growth, with system performance doubling every 3.5 months. This rapid advancement is expected to significantly contribute to the economy, with experts predicting an additional pound 7 billion in value added by 2035. Building Sustainable Cities Smart Solutions for Growing Populations: Recognising the global trend of urbanisation, Austria is actively engaging in discussions on sustainable urban development. With over 50% of the world's population residing in cities (projected to reach 70% in two decades), Austria is focusing on smart and sustainable solutions to meet the needs of growing urban communities. Omar Al Rawi, Member of the Vienna Provincial Parliament and City Council, affirmed the importance of promoting international cooperation and aligning global efforts to overcome the major challenges facing humanity, most notably climate change, environmental protection, and enhancing climate resilience, which have become global concerns.He also lauded the unprecedented achievements of COP28, which recently took place in the UAE. In his statement to the Emirates News Agency (WAM), Al Rawi explained that the current era is witnessing comprehensive changes and transformations that require addressing key issues that transcend national borders, necessitating collective action to overcome significant challenges that impact people's lives and societies, which no single country can face alone and find solutions for. Austria's participation in the World Governments Summit 2024 underscores its commitment to international coll aboration in addressing global challenges. By sharing expertise and best practices with other nations, Austria aims to solidify its position as a leader in renewable energy, AI development, and sustainable urban planning. This proactive approach paves the way for a more sustainable and prosperous future for all. Source: Emirates News Agency