Praise for UAE Net Zero ’50 drive well-deserved - GulfToday

Praise for UAE Net Zero ’50 drive well-deserved


Photo used for illustrative purpose only.

The praise from world leaders for the UAE’s Net Zero 2050 initiative is very noteworthy and appreciable. The US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, thanked UAE for its incredibly important Net Zero 2050 Strategic Initiative. As the UAE prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary as a nation later this year, this mid-century net-zero goal sets out a very powerful vision for “your next exciting decades ahead,” he said.

It sets an example for other major energy exporters to follow. “I look forward to working with the UAE turn this goal into a reality.”

Kerry also thanked the UAE for using Expo 2020 Dubai “to draw attention to the world’s shared responsibility to address the climate crisis.”

Kerry led congratulations from world leaders and prominent environmental policy-makers to the UAE for its Net Zero 2050 Strategic Initiative, calling it an “incredibly important” step in combating climate change.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson also welcomed the announcement, on Twitter: “Fantastic news that the UAE has become the first Gulf country to commit to net-zero emissions by 2050. This is a significant step in tackling climate change, and I hope more countries commit to net zero ahead of COP26.”

This UAE is the first country in the Middle East and North Africa region to commit to such an initiative.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres also tweeted his happiness at the UAE’s pledge: “I welcome the announcement by the United Arab Emirates of its intention to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. I look forward to the UAE submitting a new Climate Action plan in line with this ambitious vision and encourage other Gulf states to follow this example ahead of COP26.”

COP26 President Alok Sharma tweeted: “I am delighted the UAE has announced it will reach net zero carbon by 2050. As the first net zero-carbon commitment in the Gulf, this is an historic announcement.”

However, the praise is not surprising. Over the past years, the UAE has become an international centre for countries wishing to discuss climate change and environmental issues, as it continues to host a wide variety of leading international conferences, exhibitions and meetings that deal with topics related to a global issue that is expected to significantly impact our future.

Dr. Abdullah Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of climate Change and Environment, said that, over the past decades, the UAE has supported and bolstered global efforts to address and resolve environmental challenges.

The UAE’s entities have enhanced its position among the most influential players in this field, he said, stating that they “make tireless efforts to host relevant global events, to create a comprehensive coalition and combine efforts to tackle current and future environmental challenges.”

The pledge was announced at Expo 2020 on Thursday by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who said: “We are committed to seize the opportunity to cement our leadership on climate change within our region and take this key economic opportunity to drive development, growth and new jobs as we pivot our economy and nation to net zero.”

Even the mountains need attention. Urgent action is needed to prioritise mountain ecosystems in order to protect them from the current climate crisis and empower mountain people to build resilient livelihoods, FAO Director-General QU Dongyu said at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Mountains provide freshwater, regulate the climate and conserve biodiversity, while contributing to sustaining the livelihoods of 1.1 billion people living in mountains as well as many more living in the lowlands.

However, fragile mountain ecosystems and mountain communities are among the most vulnerable to climate change and land degradation, with some 346 million rural mountain people in developing countries at risk of hunger.

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