Friday 19 July 2024

Big challenges ahead for sustainable city builders

DUBAI, February 10, 2016

Leaders must build a future sustainable city that not only places people’s welfare at the forefront, but also preserves the natural resources, said experts on the final day of the fourth World Government Summit in Dubai, UAE.

The summit attracted more than 3,000 personalities from more than 125 countries, and 125 speakers in over 70 sessions, said the event organisers.

The attendees include VIPs and senior experts from the public and private sectors globally, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students.

At the event, mayors and key representatives of sister cities and organisations gathered to sign the ‘Dubai Charter of Sustainable Development Cities Alliance’ seeking to collaboratively achieve the vision of building a sustainable future for Dubai.

It also saw global experts primarily discuss about sustainable development of future cities in a roundtable session entitled “Shaping Future Cities.”

Hussain Nasser Lootah, the director general of Dubai Municipality, highlighted the challenges that governments face when planning a sustainable city that not only places people’s welfare at the forefront, but also preserves the natural resources.

"The population of Dubai is expected to increase to five million by 2030. As a consequence of increasing population and depleting natural resources, there is a parallel increase on demand on education, energy, employment, housing and all the other issues," he warned.

Representatives shared views on the aspect that international conventions and covenants would be essential in building cities that would preserve natural resources and achieve balanced sustainability. The experts concurred that prioritising welfare of the communities and natural resources is equally important for the benefit of future generations.

Mayors of Ankara (Turkey), Casablanca (Morocco), Amman (Jordan), and Madinah (Saudi Arabia) exchanged successful experiences in building sustainable communities that reduce utilisation of traditional energy and focus on renewable energy or alternative sources of energy.

Manvita Bardai, the director of International Capital Market Association-India, also added that in order for cities to remain on the correct path of prosperity and sustainability and ensure leaders take the right steps to achieve high standard of quality in cities, data needs to be assembled and shared with global communities.

Whether it be improving the traffic congestion, managing waste, or promoting environmental awareness to communities, Hussain Nasser Lootah added that the current model of cities would not be sufficient to realise future requirements of the community.

To prepare for a brighter, sustainable future, he reiterated the importance of developing institutional partnerships and exchanging of information with other countries.

Besides Lootah, the discussion was attended by Musabah Mubarak Al Marar, the general manager of Abu Dhabi Municipality; Ahmed Al Subaih, the secretary general of Arab Towns Organization; Dr Bilal Hamad, the mayor of Beirut; Melih Gökçek, the mayor of Ankara; Akel E. Biltaji, the mayor of Amman; Alain Claude Galliano, the vice president of Metropole de Lyon; Dr Khalid Taher, the mayor of Al Maddinah Province; Gauthier Claude Jacques Dupont, the director of Clean Energy & Sustainability Services; Dr Thikra Mohammed Alwash, the mayor of Baghdad; Abdullah Emadi, the deputy general manager of Kuwait Municipality; Mohammed Ahmed Sultan Al Khalifa, the director general of Al Manama Municipality; Mohamed Sadiki, the mayor of the Rabat and Manvita Baradi, the director of ICMA, India.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Sustainable City | builders | World Government Summit |

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