UAE to showcase efforts to tackle climate change at COP28
This year's COP28 conference will be one of the biggest on record, with 198 countries and around 75,000 participants expected. The event represents not just a critical juncture in global climate action but also a momentous opportunity for the UAE to showcase its leadership in climate change mitigation and sustainable development. The conference is expected to develop effective mechanisms for global cooperation in addressing the climate crisis, with the UAE taking on a global leadership role.
UAE puts climate change at head of economic agenda
In preparation for COP28, the UAE Cabinet approved 78 environmental projects and initiatives. These include strategies to reduce carbon emissions, regulate the use of solar energy technologies, promote sustainable tourism, and support environmentally friendly development. The UAE's broader climate strategy aims for climate neutrality by 2050, with significant steps already taken to curb greenhouse gas emissions. By 2040, the UAE aims to achieve a 60% reduction in emissions. The strategy covers six key sectors and is expected to generate about 200,000 jobs, highlighting the economic and social benefits of the UAE's sustainability efforts.
Oceans and nature-based solutions
COP28 will emphasise nature-based solutions to combating climate change. The UAE intends to plant more than 100 million mangroves by 2030, capturing an estimated 40,000 tonnes of CO2 annually. Nature-based solutions, including blue carbon ecosystems like vegetated coastal and marine ecosystems, are increasingly recognised for their significant carbon absorption and storage capacity. These solutions could contribute up to 37% of the greenhouse gas reductions needed to meet the Paris Agreement's 2030 targets.
Investments and legislative frameworks
The UAE has invested more than AED600 billion (US$163bn) in developing environmentally friendly energy sources, including key projects like the Mohammed Bin Rashid Solar Park and the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant. These initiatives contribute significantly to the nation's electricity needs and carbon emission reduction goals. The UAE also plans to ban single-use plastic bags by 2024, underlining its commitment to environmental conservation.
Global initiatives in focus
A primary focus of this year’s event will be the first Global Stocktake of the impact of national and international climate actions. This stocktake is a central part of the Paris Agreement, allowing for the monitoring of progress on climate commitments. It will assess whether global efforts are on track to limit warming to 1.5°C and debate necessary course corrections and increases in ambition to avoid the worst climate impacts.
Ultimately, COP28 will serve as a pivotal platform for Dubai to showcase its significant strides in sustainability and position the UAE as a global leader in combating climate change. By hosting such a crucial global conference, Dubai not only gets the chance to demonstrate its own progress in sustainable practices, but contributes to shaping international dialogue and action on climate change, solidifying its role as a key influencer in the global sustainability movement.