Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, presided over the launch of the 10th National Climate Ambition Dialogue today. The event, organised by the Ministry of Climate Change and the Environment (MoCCE) in collaboration with Emirates Steel Arkan, rallies under the theme "Accelerating the Pace of Transition to Low Carbon Green Industry".
The dialogue, the tenth in its series, specifically spotlights the industrial sector and aims to reduce industrial carbon emissions in the UAE. This is particularly timely as the UAE prepares to welcome the international climate community to the forthcoming Conference of the Parties (COP28) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change later this year.
During the event, 28 companies operating in the industrial sector in the UAE pledged to implement goals to reduce carbon emissions, adopt more sustainable ways in managing their operations, just ahead of the UAE's hosting of the COP28 conference in November and December 2023.
These companies are the sixth batch to join the "Climate Responsible Companies Pledge" initiative, part of the "National Dialogue for Climate Ambition", bringing the total number of companies that have signed the pledge to 90 from various sectors in the country.
The event aligns with the Year of Sustainability and seeks to enhance sectoral climate ambition within the country. It is designed to support the UAE's strategic initiative of achieving climate neutrality by 2050 and strengthen its commitment to international climate action agreements, particularly the Paris Climate Agreement. Furthermore, the event aims to foster collaboration among strategic partners, government entities, and private organisations to achieve these goals.
In her speech, Mariam Almheiri reaffirmed the UAE’s keenness to fulfil its global climate commitments by moving forward to achieve climate neutrality goals by 2050. She also pointed out that all partners in the country needed to cooperate to achieve this goal. She expressed her happiness at the pledge of the largest industrial companies in the UAE to reduce their carbon emissions ahead of COP28 this year.
She said, “The industrial sector is responsible for a large proportion of carbon emissions in the UAE and the world, and we need to work now to find practical solutions to reduce these emissions. We are confident that with the cooperation of all partners and their full commitment, we will be more capable of achieving all our common goals, facing climate change, and creating a more sustainable future for us and future generations.”
Almheiri added, “The UAE believes in the urgency of working to limit the global temperature rise to less than 1.5°C to avoid the consequences of climate change and its effects on human life. Therefore, the UAE was the first country in the Middle East to sign the Paris Climate Agreement and provide nationally determined contributions to reduce carbon emissions. With the support of our wise leadership, we are working through the National Dialogue for Climate Ambition and other initiatives to engage all stakeholders in achieving our climate goals and climate neutrality by 2050.”
Almheiri extended her gratitude to the representatives of the participating companies and conveyed her satisfaction with their commitment to sign a pledge and set targets for carbon emission reduction in their industrial operations before COP28. She emphasised the significance of this pledge as a crucial stride towards establishing an environmentally conscious industrial sector that addresses climate change, preserves the environment, and fosters sustainable economic growth.
Attendees at the event included Saeed Ghumran Al Remeithi, Chief Executive Officer of Emirates Steel Industries, and representatives from the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology, the UAE Space Agency, Fujairah Environment Authority, Dibba Al Fujairah Municipality, the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi, Dubai Municipality, Ras Al Khaimah Municipality and Emirates Steel Arkan, in addition to representatives from over 150 of the largest manufacturing companies in the country.
Saeed Ghumran Al Remeithi, Group CEO at Emirates Steel Arkan, said, "We are honoured to host the 10th National Dialogue on Climate Ambition organised by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. As the largest publicly traded steel and building materials manufacturer in the UAE and a signatory of the UAE Climate-Responsible Companies Pledge, we are proud to be driving our industry's decarbonisation efforts at a scale that is supporting the nation's strategic initiative to realise Net Zero by 2050.”
He added, "By actively minimising our environmental impact and aligning with the country's ambitious goals for a greener tomorrow, we are leveraging innovation across our products, initiatives and operations while working with our stakeholders to create a bigger impact on the industrial sector's carbon footprint, accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy and capture new business opportunities."
The 10th National Climate Ambition Dialogue witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Emirates Steel and DNV, aimed at cooperation in enhancing sustainable financing for decarbonisation, environmental, social risk Assessment, energy transformation, green steel assurance, sustainable purchasing and supply chain, and verification of carbon credits.
The event also included several discussions and workshops on key topics enabling the industrial sector to reduce carbon emissions and implement sustainable and innovative methods that contribute to promoting green financing, the circular economy, and the hydrogen economy, among other modern technologies, notably carbon capture, storage, and removal.