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UAE To Join Global Efforts

The UAE is set to join countries from around the world for the biggest environment event of the year “Earth Hour”, a landmark drive introduced by World Wildlife Fund, WWF, in 2007.

The initiative has become known as the world’s largest grassroots movement for the environment, bringing over 7,000 cities, as well as 180 countries and territories together annually. Every year, participating cities switch off lights in a symbolic action to raise awareness about environmental issues around the world. The UAE chapter of Earth Hour is led by the Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF, EWS-WWF.

This year, Earth Hour will be observed on 24th March at 8:30 pm across the UAE at three official events in open areas. Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, DEWA, and the Environment and Protected Areas Authority – Sharjah have partnered with EWS-WWF to each host Earth Hour walkathon events under a unified theme – “Walk the Talk” at Marasi Promenade, Business Bay in Dubai and at Al Majaz Waterfront in Sharjah respectively. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi has partnered with EWS-WWF to host an Earth Hour celebration on its premises.

Under its new theme, ‘Connect 2 Earth’, Earth Hour 2018 will highlight the importance of biodiversity as it declines at an unprecedented rate globally. It will also aim to encourage UAE’s community to show the world how important biodiversity is to them. The event kick starts a three-year campaign spearheaded by EWS-WWF to conserve biodiversity by highlighting the connection between climate change, biodiversity, and people, as well as by encouraging people worldwide to take action through 2018-2020 and beyond, to stop the loss of biodiversity.

In 2008, the UAE became the first country in the Arab world to participate in Earth Hour. Over the years, Earth Hour celebrations have contributed to raising awareness about energy conservation.

“The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan was a visionary in terms of sustainable development. He understood the power of the human spirit and united our nation. Similarly, Earth Hour highlights the power of each individual, and what we can achieve if we do it together. With 2018 being the Year of Zayed, we invite everyone to join the movement, honour our Founding Father’s vision, and help us make a difference,” Laila Mostafa Abdullatif, Director-General of EWS-WWF, said.

“Biodiversity is key to our livelihood. Whether it is by maintaining trees and greenery that provide us with the air we breathe, or pollination that gives us the food we eat; various species provide humanity with basic necessities, and it’s our duty now to promise to protect our shared home – the Earth, not just during Earth Hour, but on every day of the year. We are also pleased to have DEWA partner with EWS-WWF to recognise and promote the importance of Earth Hour as our National Strategic Partner,” she added.

“Biodiversity and nature underpin our lives, our economies, our health, our well-being, our happiness. It is the foundation of our living planet. Today, as we push the planet and its natural systems to the edge, Earth Hour is our chance to use our power, as individuals and as a collective, to demand and take action to protect this web of life in return for all it gives us. For the benefit of all life on Earth and of our own future,” Marco Lambertini, Director-General of WWF International, said.


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