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World leaders 'must unite to tackle climate change'

DUBAI, October 24, 2018

World leaders must join hands to face the challenges caused by climate change and global warming through initiatives and solutions based on clean energy, said a senior official at the ongoing World Green Economy Summit (WGES 2018) in Dubai.

The summit, being held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, concludes on Thursday at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, on Wednesday attended the opening of the WGES 2018. This year's theme is ‘Driving Innovation, Leading Change.’

Leading experts from across the globe are at the event to discuss ways to promote green capital amid the global commitments to build a green and sustainable world economy at the summit.

The opening ceremony was attended by prominent figures including Francois Hollande, former President of France;  Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, UAE; Thoriq Ibrahim, Minister of Environment and Energy, Maldives; Nezha El Ouafi, Secretary of State to the Minister of Energy, Mines and Sustainable Development, in charge of Sustainable Development, Morocco and Christiana Figueres, former Secretary General, UNFCCC.

Delivering the welcome address, Vice Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy in Dubai, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Electricity And Water Authority, and Chairman of WGES 2018 Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer said: "From this summit, we strongly urge leaders, experts, governments and all stakeholders to work hand in hand to face this challenge before it is too late and implement the global commitments that have been made at Paris Agreement for climate change."

"These commitments were pronounced through integrated initiatives and projects that depend on clean energy as well as through efficiently moving towards green systems, whilst using latest technologies that adapt to digital and innovative solutions,” he stated.

Al Tayer said: “In the UAE, we have initiated key initiatives that accelerate the pace of a green economy through the launch of UAE Green Agenda 2030 and Clean Energy Strategy 2050, as well as directives from our wise leadership. We have translated this into policies and projects that rely on innovation."

The Dewa chief highlighted a number of clean energy projects launched in the UAE including the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park and Masdar, in addition to various projects undertaken through public-private partnerships that aim to enhance environmental sustainability.

“The UAE has made strong strides in clean energy projects and strategies such as MBR Solar Park - the largest single-site solar park in the world with a planned capacity of 5,000 MW by 2030. This park will contribute to achieving 75 per cent of Dubai’s energy from clean energy sources by 2050, in addition to other clean energy projects as Masdar in Abu Dhabi,” he explained.

"Our efforts also focus on enhancing collaboration to implement the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030,” he added.

Al Tayer announced that apart from the UAE, both Korea and Italy have expressed their interest to join the World Green Economy Organisation (WGEO), adding that more than 60 country representatives will attend the preparatory conference on the establishment of the WGEO.

He also said that in November, Dubai will organise an international competition for universities to design buildings based on solar energy. A second edition of the event will take place during Expo 2020.

According to him, the inaugural edition of the summit saw the launch of the first green finance fund worth Dh2.4 billion ($653 million) that forms part of the Dh100 billion ($27.2 billion) ‘Dubai Green Fund’ initiative.

The fund aims to finance investments in the clean energy sector through partnerships with financial institutions in order to promote innovative solutions to support green projects locally and internationally.

In his keynote speech, Hollande spoke about international efforts being made so far to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals and how France was combating climate change in light of its adoption to the most effective initiatives.

He also spoke about the role developing countries can play to address climate change compared to the role played by developed countries.

In his address, Dr Al Zeyoudi highlighted the UAE’s transformation progress into green economy, while Figueres reviewed the key efforts being made by the United Nations and Member States to tackle climate change in all areas.

She also shared her own insights based on her experience on creating a more flexible and effective ways in this regard.

Also during the inaugural event, the UAE’s achievements made in the green economy transformation were reviewed through a video presentation.

The first day of the summit witnessed various discussions on the role of green economy in national strategies during a plenary session titled ‘Driving the green economy in the national agenda’.

The session tackled various challenges facing ministries of environment all around the world as well as green economy policies, legislation and regulations, and development of interaction between tourism and sustainability. It was attended by Thoriq Ibrahim and El Ouafi, said the organisers.

In addition, a parallel session titled the  “World Expos – Inspiring through Collaboration” was also held in the first day of the summit in the presence of Anoosha Almarzouqi, Head of Partnerships and Co-Creation, Opportunity Pavilion, Expo 2020 Dubai, Dr Matt Kennedy, Head of Strategy and Business, International Energy Research Centre, UK and Jennifer Colville Innovation Team Lead, UNDP, Jordan, they added.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: climate change | World Green Economy Summit |

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