Vulnerability of the Emirati Energy Sector for Disaster: A Critical Review

Khalifa Al Kaili, Chaminda Pathirage, Dilanthi Amaratunga

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Infrastructure in all its forms is a valuable asset and vulnerable to any natural or manmade hazard. The protection of infrastructure is thus one of the most important and difficult tasks for any government. The energy sector dominates in the UAE and consists of various assets - electricity, oil and natural gas that are geographically dispersed and connected by systems and networks. The protection of these systems and assets and within the energy sector especially, the safeguarding of oil and gas infrastructure from any and all internal and external threats should become top priority in the UAE. Threats to geopolitical and economic stability that need to be considered and prepared for include tectonic activity, climate change, nuclear energy, terrorism and war. This paper explores the disaster vulnerability of the Emirati energy sector with specific focus on Abu Dhabi and Dubai cities. It is based on secondary data, taken from various academic and professional sources, and primary data from a questionnaire survey administered on site at two electricity-generating plants in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Forty questionnaires were distributed and 35 were returned back- 20 Abu Dhabi and 15 Dubai. Oil and gas sectors were identified as the most vulnerable energy sources in both Abu-Dhabi and Dubai. Risk from terrorism was thought to be the greatest hazard with every single respondent choosing it. This was despite the fact that respondents believe it to be one of the threats that the energy sector is prepared for.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)701-709
Number of pages9
JournalProcedia Economics and Finance
Early online date30 Dec 2014
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2014
Event4th International Conference on Building Resilience - Salford Quays, Manchester, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Sep 201411 Sep 2014
Conference number: 4


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