The UAE supports global innovation with international conferences and events, and awards that recognise sustainable solutions
The UAE celebrates innovators and bright minds from around the world. It attracts and encourages them to provide innovative and sustainable solutions to global humanitarian and development challenges to ensure a brighter future for humanity. The awards that the UAE offers are a major factor in consolidating its position as an international hub for innovation, an attractive destination for creative minds, and an incubator for innovators from all over the world. These awards contribute to presenting effective projects and programmes to overcome and address the challenges humanity faces today. They also introduce sustainable solutions that enable societies around the world to cross into a future that offers opportunities for success and progress.
HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority’s (DEWA), said that the numerous awards launched by the UAE show the growing role of the country and its wise leadership in transforming challenges into opportunities. They also reflect the visionary leadership of HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE; HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai; and HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. Through the awards, the UAE hopes to awaken the enthusiasm of individuals, bodies and organisations and enhance their social responsibility, as well as encourage global innovation, research and development (R&D), and adoption of the latest disruptive technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, to ensure a more sustainable future for the whole world.
“The repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic have underlined the need to intensify global efforts to protect our planet. All the countries worldwide share the same fate. Therefore, there is a need for all of us to adopt green and sustainable policies, make smart investment in our natural resources to protect them from depletion, and reduce waste. The UAE has made considerable progress in the expansion of its clean and renewable energy projects, increasing digitisation and the use of the Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies, promoting world-class infrastructure with the highest levels of reliability, efficiency and availability, and achieving leading results in its carbon emission reduction efforts. The UAE prioritises sustainable development and securing energy supply, to achieve the goals of the UAE Centennial 2071 to make the UAE the world’s leading nation,” added Al Tayer.
Many international awards have been launched from the UAE. They have significantly stimulated innovations and led to effective solutions to challenges impeding sustainable growth. Some of the most prominent of these awards are:
Zayed Sustainability Prize
The UAE’s wise leadership launched the Zayed Sustainability Prize in 2008 to honour the legacy and vision of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to lay a solid foundation for sustainability. The prize honours global small and medium enterprises (SMEs), non-profit organisations, and high schools that present innovative, sustainable solutions capable of making a positive societal impact. Over 13 years, the prize honoured 86 winners whose innovative sustainable solutions and outstanding school projects have made a difference, directly or indirectly, to the lives of over 352 million people around the world. The Prize consists of five categories: health, food, energy, water, and global high schools. The 2022 winners will be announced during Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week in January 2022.
The World Green Economy Summit
The World Green Economy Summit (WGES), which is organised by DEWA and the World Green Economy Organisation (WGEO) under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, plays a key role in raising awareness on green economy and promoting green projects in the UAE and the region. WGES, which is held this year under the theme ‘Galvanizing Action for a Sustainable Recovery,’ is a strategic platform to support international collaboration to address global challenges, enhance sustainable development and green economy investments, as well as encourage the adoption of effective relevant policies and plans.
WGES attracts country heads, leaders, and influencers from across the globe. The event also draws thought leaders, specialists and experts in green economy and sustainable development along with CEOs, stakeholders, financial institutions, representatives of global markets, business leaders, and experts in the public and private sectors. They discuss pressing topics, most prominent of which are climate change and global warming. In addition, they examine energy policies in alignment with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) while identifying the work required to build a sustainable future. The summit enables exchange of opinions on successful sustainability strategies, systems and policies for possible re-implementation and expansion. The attendees also discuss the different effective methods to face challenges and maximise available opportunities to drive the transformation towards green economy.
The 7th WGES will take place on 6-7 October 2021 at Expo 2020 Dubai, Coinciding with Expo 2020, this year’s summit is expected to have a wider reach compared to previous ones. This will improve WGES’ success in promoting Dubai’s position as a global hub for green economy.
The Emirates Energy Award
Under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy launched the Emirates Energy Award (EEA) to encourage individuals and establishments in the Middle East and North Africa to rationalise their energy and resource consumption, as well as highlight best practices in energy efficiency, clean energy, sustainability and environmental conservation. EEA recognises the efforts of individuals and the public and private entities to enforce energy-efficient projects. It also promotes relevant education, scientific research, and creative ideas. With the theme ‘Inspiring Innovation for Sustainable Energy,’ the 4th EEA will highlight Dubai’s role in supporting and implementing strategies designed to use renewable energy and energy technologies.
HE Ahmed Buti Al Muhairbi, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Energy said that EEA with its categories provides individuals and entities with an international platform to show their innovative and sustainable solutions to environmental pollution and global warming on top of their work to reduce carbon emissions and the consumption of finite natural resources.
“We strive to enhance the position of the EEA by sharing the efforts and innovations of experts and stakeholders with regional and global energy communities. Our goal is also to cement the leading role of Dubai and the UAE in energy efficiency and sustainability. We look forward to offering advanced models and expertise to mark a new beginning for the region’s energy sector,” he added.