The oil rich countries of the Middle East share a familiar problem. As an example, take the seven principalities that form the United Arab Emirates or UAE. Each year the UAE uses more and more of it's petroleum to supply the growing energy demands of the homeland, leaving less oil to sell on the open markets.
That growing domestic demand for energy has much to do with the way we live in large communities all over the world.
So what if people took a new approach to city planning, can we "plan" a more energy efficient future?
That's the idea behind Masdar City in Abu Dhabi. In fact there's something of an international competition to build a "sustainable city" or the first "solar city", so the UAE is not alone in this development.
Masdar City is designed to generate and consume clean energy and manage that consumption to the point of selling off excess energy production. The city design keeps the desert sun's heat to a minimum, maximizes efficient water use and demands less from the surrounding environment.
But like I said, the UAE is not alone. Other developments are taking place in other countries.
Try Fujisawa SST, (Sustainable Smart Town), in Japan.