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AFED Report 2018
 
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Environment and development AL-BIA WAL-TANMIA Leading Arabic Environment Magazine

March 2019
Editorial
Forum
NAJIB SAAB
Environment action urgent, stop being complacent
NAJIB SAAB
Stop being complacent, show some urgency, and get real about implementing the goals you set in 2015 for achieving sustainable development
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PADDY PADMANATHAN
Ten Years of ACWA Power and Corporate Responsibility
PADDY PADMANATHAN
Since 2007 the Arab region has undergone a number of changes because of economic cycles
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Yihui Wang
AFED Synthesizes Decade of Arab State of the Environment Reports
Yihui Wang
The Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED) has published a report titled, ‘Arab Environment in 10 Years’, which
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Meet the
 Editor-in-Chief
Najib Saab
 
 
Selected articles News
Climate change, conflict: Strategic risks for 2019 11/2/2019
Climate-fueled security risks will overwhelm the Middle East in 2019, while enmity and hostility rather than unity will characterize Europe; the U.S. will tumble in its war on terrorism, and an unsustainable future will daunt Russia. These are some of the global security challenges anticipated in a report entitled “Strategic Outlook 2019,” carrying the theme “Towards a Zero-Sum World ...more
 
Environmental Conservation in the UAE: An Authentic Cultural Heritage and Experience 8/1/2018
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has prioritized the conservation of the environment and natural resources, both being integral to its national heritage, almost since the establishment of the federation in 1971. The founding father of the UAE, late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, considered the environment and sustainable development to be cornerstones of the nation’s progress. ...more
 
PREVENTING DISEASE THROUGH HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT: ASSESSMENT OF THE BURDEN OF DISEASE FROM ENVIRONMENTAL RISKS IN ARAB COUNTRIES 1/6/2017
The realization of how many diseases and illnesses can be prevented by focusing on the management of environmental risks adds impetus to efforts to encourage preventive health measures through all available policies, strategies, interventions, technologies and knowledge. This is generally true to sustain development in most countries of the world, but is more significant in Arab countries where environmental risks are higher and rates of development slower. ...more
 
FactCheck: The facts on Trump's EPA nominee 15/12/2016
Scott Pruitt, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has made some questionable claims related to global warming, fracking and the Clean Power Plan. ...more
 
AFED Secretariat Annual Work Report 2016 10/11/2016
Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED) is closing its most challenging year, in a region overwhelmed by security and economic turmoil. Although we continue to believe that, after all sorts of conflicts and wars, people will still need to preserve and develop their natural capital that they need for survival, AFED is being stripped of minimum resources to execute its mission ...more
 
Waste trade: exporting countries responsible to return refused waste. Interview with Rolph Payet. 2/3/2016
As part of its cover story about Waste trade, in the March-April 2016 issue, Al-Bia Wal-Tanmia magazine conducted this interview with Rolph Payet, executive secretary of the Basel Convention on the control of transboundary movements of hazardous wastes and their disposal. ...more
 
Strong climate deal good for Arab countries 4/12/2015
Climate change, once considered an issue for the future, has now moved firmly into the present. Few days before a new climate change deal is due to be agreed in Paris, the question is no longer whether there will be an agreement but what shape and how strong it will be. ...more
 
Sustainable consumption: AFED’s 2015 report and public opinion survey 19/11/2015
In 2009, an Arab Regional Strategy for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) was adopted by the League of Arab States. This was one of the first such regional strategies to be developed before the RIO+20 summit, which had adopted the 10 Year Framework of Programs (10YFP) on SCP. Consequently, the Arab Region moved forward and became the first region to develop and adopt a Roadmap for Implementation of the 10YFP on SCP at the regional level in June 2013. However, as is the case in most Arab regional strategies, both the roadmap and the SCP regional strategy are far from being implemented at the national levels. Development and implementation of SCP strategies in most Arab countries are still lagging. ...more
 
ACWA Power Develops 200 MW Solar PV Plant in Dubai: 5.84 Cents per kWh Sets New Global Pricing Benchmark 19/11/2015
In March 2015, the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with a consortium of ACWA Power and TSK for a 200 MW net solar photo-voltaic (PV), under Phase II of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the Middle East’s largest renewable energy park. The bid tariff set a new global pricing benchmark for renewable energy generated from utility scale PV panels at USD 5.84 cents/kWh without subsidies. The second phase is based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model and is intended to be operational by April 2017. The project, which occupies 4.5 Km2, will help to achieve a reduction of 400,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. ...more
 
Impact of phasing out water subsidies in Tunisia and Morocco on consumption: a general equilibrium approach 19/11/2015
Morocco and Tunisia are considered among the countries where the scarcity of water resources may cause a serious constraint to the development of their economies. The agricultural sector is the most important consumer of water with more than 80% of the total. Moreover, both countries have shown an increase in the share of GDP accounted for by the nonfarm sectors, which imply an increase in residential water demand as well as manufacturing and service sectors. Consequently, if production growth in the non-farm sectors requires a proportional increase of water demand factor , then water can be a major constraint to economic growth in both countries. ...more
 
GENETICALLY ENGINEERED CLIMATE-RESILIENT SEEDS AS A POSSIBLE RESPONSE TO CLIMATE CHANGE-INDUCED FOOD SHORTAGES 4/9/2015
Climate change is predicted to have dramatic impacts on agricultural production globally. Although food production in some regions of the world may benefit from increasing average temperatures, most of the world will face severe challenges in adapting agricultural systems to the predicted climatic changes. ...more
 
Food Security and Climate Change: the UAE Experience 15/5/2015
The Arab world faces critical challenges in ensuring its food security. Our region is already the world’s largest net importer of essentials such as cereals and sugar, low water supplies in the region mean that expanding agricultural production is difficult, and population growth means that more people must be fed each year. In many ways, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) presents an exemplary case of this challenge. ...more
 
The UNDP-CEDRO Program’s Solar Power Initiatives 5/3/2015
The CEDRO project, a UNDP executed program, has been established since 2007, originally through a generous grant from the Government of Spain, through the Lebanon Recovery Fund, of approximately $10 million. At that time, renewable energy at large, and solar power in specific (with the exception of residential solar hot water systems), have not yet begun to be well propagated and/established. ...more
 
Conflict, refugees and food insecurity in the Arab region 5/3/2015
Conflict has a direct and indirect effect on food security, undermining it through various channels. Its direct effects are numerous – the destruction of infrastructure and machinery; death of livestock; razing of farm land,; and blocked access to markets for producers, distributors, and consumers. Indirectly, conflict discourages productive investment in agriculture, thereby reducing the availability of food. It strips government of tax revenues that prevent the establishment of social safety nets which promote food security. ...more
 
Virtual Water Trade as a Policy Instrument Contributing to the Achievement of Food Security in the GCC Countries 5/3/2015
The concept of ‘virtual water’ has been introduced by Tony Allan in the early nineties (Allan, 1993; 1994). However, it took nearly a decade to get global recognition for the importance of the concept of achieving regional and global water security. The "virtual water" content of a product, as often defined, is the volume of water used to produce the product, measured at the place where the product was actually produced (i.e., a production site specific definition). ...more
 
Review of the likely impact of climate change on agriculture in selected Arab countries 5/3/2015
Climate change is expected to impact agriculture in the region in one way or another. Below is a short review of the anticipated impact of climate change on agricultural in selected Arab countries. ...more
 
How should we tackle natural conservation of Lebanon?: Japanese Ambassador `s observation 5/3/2015
The East Mediterranean, a cradle of the civilizations, is blessed with a diverse and plentiful nature. But this nature is endangered. Nowadays we can observe that the growth range of the Lebanese Cedars has diminished quite drastically. ...more
 
Developing Fish Resources in the Arab World 7/1/2015
The Arab World is rich with large fish resources providing health and cheap proteins to Arabs, compared to animal proteins from other resources. Since the Arab World suffers a shortage in grazing and animal feed resources, which limits the capability to expand meat production, it is very important to sustain the contribution of fish resources in providing animal proteins to the Arab food basket; actually, this sector must be developed to sustainably increase its contribution to the Arab food security system. ...more
 
Saudi Arabia to tender construction for Mecca 600MW solar project: energy ministry 26/3/2019
Saudi Arabia plans to tender a contract to build a 600 megawatt solar power project in Mecca, the country’s energy ministry said in a tweet on Sunday. ...more
 
Global carbon emissions hit record high in 2018: IEA 26/3/2019
Global energy-related carbon emissions rose to a record high last year as energy demand and coal use increased, mainly in Asia, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Tuesday. ...more
 
Indonesia says low-carbon plan could spur annual GDP growth 26/3/2019
Indonesia plans to adopt a more sustainable economic development plan from 2020 that could deliver annual GDP growth of 5.6 to 6 percent over the next 25 years, its planning minister said on Tuesday. ...more
 
Drones are the new cost-effective way to monitor the environment 26/3/2019
Conservationists, researchers and volunteers have spent countless hours on the ground keeping tabs on water quality in rivers across the country. Their work has been instrumental over the years, and new technology in the form of drones is making their jobs a whole lot easier. ...more
 
World’s fastest shark now facing extinction, conservation experts warn 26/3/2019
The world’s fastest shark is hurtling towards extinction following years of hunting for its prized meat and fins. ...more
 
Renewables could generate 100 per cent of the UAE’s power 'within 50 years' 25/3/2019
Renewables could generate 100 per cent of the UAE’s power needs within 50 years, if the investment and will is there, according to the outgoing head of the International Renewable Energy Agency. ...more
 
Cholera cases reported as hunger, disease stalk African cyclone survivors 25/3/2019
Cholera cases were reported on Friday in the Mozambican city of Beira, adding a risk of deadly illnesses for hundreds of thousands of people who are scrambling for shelter, food and water after catastrophic flooding in southern Africa. ...more
 
Hunt for bogus asthma cure threatens pangolins 25/3/2019
One of nature’s most remarkable creatures, the pangolin, is being driven to extinction as hunting and trafficking have soared in recent years. ...more
 
The planet's prodigious poo problem 25/3/2019
Each year, livestock produces billions of tonnes of excrement. It’s starting to poison the natural world. So what is to be dung? ...more
 
Costco to be the first major retailer to cut Roundup from the shelves 25/3/2019
Moms Across America, a grassroots community of concerned citizens, began a campaign to eliminate the sale of the weed killer Roundup from three major retailers after the recent court decision to uphold the Johnson V. Monsanto lawsuit that concluded that exposure to Roundup contributes to non-Hodgkins lymphoma. ...more
 
Dubai’s model of sustainability sprouting at the Expo nursery 22/3/2019
As the Expo 2020 Dubai site takes shape, tucked just beside it is a place where all “the magic happens” — a 22-hectare nursery home to thousands of water-efficient native and adaptive plants and trees that will soon spread across the world fair site. ...more
 
Climate change's fingerprints are on U.S. Midwest floods: scientists 22/3/2019
Climate change played a hand in the deadly floods in the U.S. upper Midwest that have damaged crops and drowned livestock, scientists said on Thursday, while a Trump administration official said more homework was needed before making that link. ...more
 
Killer whale family sighted in UAE for first time in more than a decade 22/3/2019
A killer whale family last seen off the UAE coast in 2008 has been sighted near Moon Island, about 70km off the coast of Dubai. ...more
 
Climate change could make insurance too expensive for most people – report 22/3/2019
Insurers have warned that climate change could make cover for ordinary people unaffordable after the world’s largest reinsurance firm blamed global warming for $24bn (£18bn) of losses in the Californian wildfires. ...more
 
Thanks to humans the ‘wilderness’ no longer exists – but we can make things on Earth better 22/3/2019
When the colonists arrived in Australia, they saw themselves as conquering both the continent’s land and its people. In many respects, they didn’t differentiate between the two. ...more
 
US judge halts hundreds of drilling projects in groundbreaking climate change ruling 21/3/2019
In the first significant check on the Trump administration’s “energy-first” agenda, a US judge has temporarily halted hundreds of drilling projects for failing to take climate change into account. ...more
 
Butterfly numbers down by two thirds 21/3/2019
Meadows adjacent to high-intensity agricultural areas are home to less than half the number of butterfly species than areas in nature preserves. ...more
 
Value of China's metal e-waste to double to $24 billion by 2030: Greenpeace 21/3/2019
The potential value of recyclable metals in discarded mobile phones, laptops and desktop computers in China will more than double to around $24 billion by 2030, environmental group Greenpeace forecast on Thursday. ...more
 
Amnesty faults electric vehicle batteries as carbon intensive 21/3/2019
Amnesty International attacked the electric vehicle (EV) industry on Thursday for selling itself as environmentally friendly while producing many of its batteries using polluting fossil fuels and unethically sourced minerals. ...more
 
EU leaders push for net-zero emissions without setting target date 21/3/2019
European Union leaders charted a course toward net-zero global warming emissions but without setting a target date for the goal in a draft summit statement on Wednesday. ...more
 
UAE backs Caribbean green energy projects with $50m fund 20/3/2019
The UAE has made a $50 million (Dh183m) investment into clean energy projects in the Caribbean. ...more
 
China phases out 280,000 T of ozone-depleting substances in 2018: Xinhua 20/3/2019
China has phased out 280,000 tonnes of ozone-depleting substance (ODS) production as part of its obligations to the 1988 Montreal Protocol aimed at protecting the ozone layer, the official Xinhua news agency reported late on Tuesday. ...more
 
In Ivory Coast, organic chocolate made with a bicycle 20/3/2019
Dana Mroueh’s chocolate factory is a rarity for Ivory Coast and not only because the world’s top cocoa grower produces precious little finished chocolate. ...more
 
BNP Paribas' insurer Cardif reduces exposure to coal 20/3/2019
The Cardif insurance division of BNP Paribas, France’s largest bank, on Monday outlined new targets to reduce its exposure to coal as companies around the world step up fossil fuel divestment plans to improve the environment. ...more
 
Baby turtles officially return to the beaches of Mumbai after largest beach clean up in history 20/3/2019
Olive Ridley baby turtles have officially returned to the beaches of Mumbai, and it is all because one of the world’s largest beach clean-up efforts. ...more
 
 
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