Emirates news agency – Global Green Economy Summit begins at Expo 2020 Dubai
DUBAI, October 6, 2021 (WAM) – The 2021 World Green Economy Summit (WGES), under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai , kicked off today at the Dubai Exhibition Center at Expo 2020 Dubai.
Organized by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and the World Green Economy Organization, the first day of the summit brought together 30 leading speakers, including former presidents and first ministers, and business leaders of multinationals.
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Managing Director and CEO of DEWA and Chairman of WGES, delivered his remarks to formally welcome all participants to the 7th Summit. Al Tayer was followed by HE Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Mheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment of the United Arab Emirates, who delivered the opening speech.
An opening video was released ahead of an interview with former French President François Hollande, who also gave a keynote address on the “Green Climate Fund, Climate Finance and Progress Since COP21”. Mary Robinson, President of The Elders, former United Nations Special Envoy on Climate Change and former President of Ireland, also graced the event to speak about “Climate justice for future generations”. The first plenary round table titled “On the road to COP26”, began with high-level officials including Aminath Shauna, Minister of Environment, Climate Change and Technology of the Republic of Maldives; Molwyn Joseph, Minister of Health, Welfare and Environment, Antigua and Barbuda; Martha Delgado, Mexican Deputy Minister for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights; Ahmad Buti Al Muhairbi, Secretary General of the Dubai Supreme Energy Council; and Ovais Sarmad, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Under-Executive Secretary of the United Nations Secretariat on Climate Change.
Shauna stressed that the Maldives are among the countries most affected by coastal erosion due to climate change and sea level rise. Shauna further underlined the need to mobilize global efforts to face the challenges climate in the Maldives and around the world.
Joseph called on those responsible for increasing emissions to take responsibility for nations affected by pollution and climate change.
Al Muhairbi pointed out that several renewable energy projects have been implemented in the GCC to conserve energy resources and progress towards meeting our commitments under the Paris Agreement.
Sarmad said that to ensure that the next climate summit in Glasgow will meet its targets. Everyone must step up to their ambition and allocate up to $ 100 billion to support nations affected by climate change.
The second plenary panel focused on “The Next Boom in Green Infrastructure”, where guest speakers and participants discussed the main challenges and opportunities in designing and building the green finance process. They also discussed different ways to position the CCG towards green infrastructure and enable it to optimize the benefits arising from this growth.
Speakers included Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, Managing Director of Digital Dubai; Gennaro Migliore, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean; and James Grabert, Global Head of UNFCCC Regional Collaborating Centers and Director of the Mitigation Division at the United Nations Climate Change Secretariat. They were accompanied by Nasser Hamad Abu Shehab, Director General – Strategy and Corporate Governance for Mobility at the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority; and Alexandra Palt, Director of Corporate Responsibility and Deputy Managing Director of the L’Oréal Foundation.
WGES also hosted a fireside chat to discuss the crucial role of young people in tackling climate change in the Middle East. The Arab Youth Council for Climate Change (AYCCC) represented the youth sector in discussions which saw the council share its plans to increase youth participation in climate change mitigation and development priorities and climate policies before the 28th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 28).
Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth of the United Arab Emirates, shared their views during the session; and HRH Princess Abze Djigma, Special Envoy of the President for Resource Mobilization for SDGs and Climate Change, Burkina Faso.
In addition, Fredrick Reinfeldt, former Swedish Prime Minister, gave a speech entitled “Global Perspectives: Lessons from Sweden’s Sustainable Energy Transformation”. His speech was followed by the second plenary round table on “Returning to NetZero: new technologies, green economy and policies”. During this session, participants discussed how to rethink, build and prepare for a net zero emissions future. In addition, they discussed the role of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and the digital revolution in overhauling the business operations of different major sectors. The panelists were Xavier Anglada, Managing Director, Accenture Middle East; Ibrahim Al Zu’bi, Director of Sustainability, Majid Al Futtaim; and Philippe Diez, Vice-President EMEA, Energy & Sustainability Services, Schneider Electric.
Day one also included a fireside chat with Finn Mortensen, executive director of State of Green, a non-profit partnership between Denmark and four major business organizations. The Green State was created as part of Denmark’s preparations for the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. During the conversation, Mortensen spoke about Danish climate partnerships and how they could serve as a model for other countries in terms of implementing similar collaborations.
A fireside discussion on “The Green Economy and Policies – Financing Africa’s Sustainable Energy Future” was also presented. The session focused on the importance of financing the adoption of green technologies in Africa. In addition, he highlighted the role of renewables and small power grids in meeting the growing demand for energy, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as in bridging cost and environmental impact gaps. Speakers included Daniel Hanna, Global Head, Sustainable Finance, Standard Chartered Bank; and Richard Muyung, Head of Environment and Climate Change, Tanzania National Electric Company, Ministry of Energy, Tanzania.
The first day ended with hybrid live and virtual open forums where key takeaways were discussed and questions addressed. Speakers from the live sessions interacted with participants in the conference room, while speakers from the virtual sessions responded to questions and comments from participants online.
The 7th WGES will resume its discussions on its second and final day on Thursday, October 7, 2021. The second day will feature a multitude of activities, dialogue sessions and keynote addresses. It will highlight pressing themes and pressing issues including climate change, sustainable finance, audit and regulatory policies in a green economy framework, disclosure of environmental, social and corporate governance data. , sustainability and food security, sustainable businesses and green technologies and infrastructure