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Eco-Schools Climate Initiative - UAE
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Eco-Schools Climate Initiative - UAE

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Emirates Wildlife Society (EWS) – WWF, Ministry of Education and HSBC, along with the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) have today launched the HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative in the UAE.

The programme aims to develop a global network of schools focused on understanding climate change and championing energy efficiency initiatives in local communities.

Now in its second year and currently running in 18 countries around the globe, the programme focuses on 20 private and government schools across the UAE

With the support of the Ministry of Education and HSBC, the Emirates Wildlife Society – WWF will drive the Eco-Schools Climate Initiate as part of its campaign to integrate tackling environmental issues and the UAE education agenda.

Speaking at the Eco-Schools Climate Initiative launch, Abdulfattah Sharaf, CEO, HSBC UAE said: “As the future guardians of our planet, it is extremely important that we educate our children now about the world around them. It is essential for them to understand the issues surrounding their environment and become passionate about protecting it.’’

“Today, we are delighted to be partnering with EWS- WWF and Ministry of Education to bring the HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative to the UAE. By raising awareness in our children about the challenges of preserving the environment and creating the opportunity for them to take action, we will make a difference to our communities and the future of our planet.”

The HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative focuses on a variety of environmental themes ranging from energy efficiency, transport and waste to water and biodiversity.

The programme builds on HSBC’s long standing commitment to environmental education through collaboration with FEE’s Eco-Schools awards scheme – the world's largest environmental education programme for children.

Speaking at the launch ceremony, Dr. Sheikha Al Shamsi, Acting Chief Executive for Educational Affairs, Ministry of Education said, “If environmental issues are given importance by other countries, in the UAE, we take them as priorities, since our footprint is amongst the highest in the world; and the Ministry of Education with the cooperation of other authorities, is working to raise the awareness level among students on climate change and reducing our energy and water consumption.”

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, Managing Director of EWS-WWF said: “The HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative is a highly-credible global programme, reaching out to millions of children around the world. The UAE has one of the highest ecological footprints in the world, largely as a result of its carbon emissions. So, it is vital that we tackle climate change at all levels from educational institutions through the private sector and to government.’

“The UAE suffers from a harsh climate, yet it is home to unique and wonderful species and creatures which require protection.

“By partnering with FEE, and through the support of HSBC staff and volunteers, this programme educates school children living in the UAE, advancing their knowledge of the environmental issues.”

“Through the programme we will equip them with the practical know-how that will enable them to take action to conserve and protect our countries environmental heritage for generations to come.”

With the support of HSBC volunteers and Eco-Schools Programme staff, students can create eco-committees and perform audits to assess their school’s environmental performance. They will be able to pick environmental themes they want to address and measure and monitor their progress accordingly. Specifically, the programme enables schools to enhance their local surroundings, save money and reduce their carbon footprint.

The efforts of the children, staff and volunteers in Eco-Schools are recognised internationally by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and schools can also work towards attaining Green Flag status with FEE.

The programme culminates each year with the HSBC Eco-Code Climate Competition which encourages the sharing of best practice and the celebration of achievement with other schools around the world. This year, two UAE schools will also take part in a live video-conference post-launch to share and showcase past or ongoing success stories, further inspiring students and HSBC volunteers. Footage of this will be made available.

The HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative aims to reach over 100,000 children in its first three academic years.
* Countries currently involved are Brazil, China, England, France, Ireland, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Malta, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, the United States and Wales.











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