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Sustainable Arabia: Clean Energy
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Sustainable Arabia: Clean Energy

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H.E. Dr. Rashid Bin Fahad, UAE Minister of Environment and Water, reiterated the importance of Sustainable Development in the UAE, during his opening keynote speech, following the inauguration of Sustainable Arabia: Clean Energy. Organised by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in cooperation with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, the high level conference is taking place at the Al Murooj Rotana in Dubai until May 3.

H.E. discussed the requirement for transformation in order to create sustainable development, and stated: “Man-made activities have put us in a critical situation. We need to make quick changes if we are to protect the planet. The economic development we’ve witnessed in the past 40 years has created new challenges which the leadership of the UAE is taking into account. This is demonstrated by the UAE’s sustainable development strategy which was initiated by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minster and Ruler of Dubai, under the theme: ‘Green Economy for Sustainable Development’.”

His Excellency Dr. Rashid Bin Fahad continued: “Through this initiative, the UAE aims to become one of the world leaders as well as a centre for the export and re-export of green products and technologies. The initiative consists of six fields, including; Green Energy, Investment incentives, Green City, Climate Change Effects, and Green Lifestyle, which form a vehicle that enables the country to realize its objective.”

Following the inauguration speech, His Excellency Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, delivered an opening keynote discussing the region’s sustainability priorities in preparation for Arab countries attending the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in June 2012.

H.E. Al Tayer said: “The UAE and the region is reaching a new milestone in development and furthering its position among leading nations in the field of Sustainability; all in accordance with UAE’s Vision 2021. Sustainability is a key priority for the government of the UAE, as clearly expressed in the words of HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates, who said that the UAE is diversifying its energy sources and enhancing its experience in international energy markets as a global hub of Renewable Energy Research and Development.”

H.E Al Tayer also cited the words of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, and Ruler of Dubai, saying: “We recognize that preserving our energy resources will be one of the greatest challenges in our drive towards sustainable development. This, however, will not materialize unless the different facets of our society adopt energy conservation principles in their core values. The future generations will be the chief beneficiary of our achievements and the best judge of what we accomplish in this field”.

“Our objective is to provide a platform to address environmental challenges in the Arab region and contribute to reaching a consensus on the concept, impact and conducive institutional frameworks for green and sustainable economies,” said Dr Elissar Sarrouh, UN Resident Coordinator / UNDP Resident Representative. “UNDP is well placed to support such deliberations and policy dialogue, as we leverage global and regional resources and expertise, provide solid knowledge-sharing platforms and support national capacity and policy development in the transition to green economies and sustainable development.”

“The world has seen significant development progress in the last 20 years, particularly in terms of reducing income poverty and extending basic services, as captured in progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The international community must not lose its focus on achieving the MDGs,” Dr. Elissar concluded.

RIO +20, organised by the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD), marks the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), held in Rio de Janeiro, and the 10th anniversary of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg. RIO +20 takes place in Brazil on June 20-22 2012 and will be attended by heads of state from the around the world and top-ranking government delegations.











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