Dubai, UAE – Emirates Nature-WWF has teamed-up with Accenture (NYSE: ACN) to advance the implementation of Sustainable Blue Economy (SBE) principles in the UAE. The collaboration highlights the urgent need for collective action at the intersection of public and private finance – ultimately driving sustainability through ocean health.

Ocean-linked sectors, or the 'blue economy', are emerging as a significant economic force with an estimated annual value of USD$2.5 trillion before the pandemic. The rapidly growing sector is equivalent in size to the world's seventh largest economy. However, if not addressed and informed by environmental sustainability measures, the increased attention towards the blue economy from investors, insurers, banks and policymakers poses risks that can threaten the sustainability of the ocean’s resources.

Accenture is working with Emirates Nature-WWF to conduct an extensive study highlighting opportunities to attract funding while also protecting vital marine ecosystems. The research is dedicated to identifying the enabling factors, opportunities as well as challenges in accelerating Nature-based Solutions (NbS) and the Sustainable Blue Economy in the UAE. The collaborative work will help scale blue finance in the UAE.

Additionally, the collaboration significantly enhances Emirates Nature-WWF’s ongoing work in NbS and SBE and will seek to pioneer innovative blended financing approaches. These initiatives are expected to emphasize sustainable development, bolster climate resilience, and foster biodiversity conservation across the UAE.

Nadya Abdulla Kamali, Managing Director at Accenture, said, “We are committed to embedding sustainability into everything we do and everyone we work with, which includes safeguarding biodiversity in our oceans and around the globe. The Sustainable Blue Economy initiative offers an invaluable opportunity to integrate ecological conservation with economic development. By leveraging Accenture’s deep industry and sustainability expertise, together with Emirates Nature-WWF’s 23 years of environmental impact on the ground in the UAE, we will develop solutions that protect critical habitats while encouraging sustainable growth without tradeoffs.”

Laila Mostafa Abdullatif, Director General at Emirates Nature-WWF, said, “This collaboration emphasizes the immediate need to boost nature finance, recognizing the significant opportunities and inherent challenges presented by NbS and SBE in the UAE. Leveraging Emirates Nature-WWF's vast experience in NbS, along with our conservation efforts and community work, we are uniquely equipped to lead this vital initiative.”

“Our collaboration with Accenture is instrumental in maximizing the potential of our efforts on scaling nature finance. At Emirates Nature-WWF, we are focused on cultivating a strong pipeline of projects that will create momentum in nature finance and investments and involve a wide range of public and private stakeholders. Accenture’s dedication to development and environmental stewardship aligns with our goals as we jointly work to boost nature investments, substantially impacting sustainable development in the region,” Abdullatif added.

The effort is designed to align with the UAE’s overarching green economy strategies, setting a new benchmark for sustainable development and environmental conservation – which can spur new initiatives in clean ocean technology, sustainable tourism and protection of vital ocean carbon sinks.

About Emirates Nature-WWF

Emirates Nature-WWF is an environmental NGO charity established to conserve the United Arab Emirates’ natural heritage and build a future where people and nature thrive. The organization was founded in 2001 by our Honorary Founder and President, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler’s Representative in the Al Dhafra Region and Chairman of the Governing Board of the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi, as a legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed’s vision for the United Arab Emirates. 

For two decades, Emirates Nature-WWF has been a prominent and active partner in environmental conservation in the MENA region. We work in association with WWF, one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations. 

As a local conservation think-tank and pioneers of the “Leaders of Change” programme, the world’s first- ever digital membership platform for the environment – we empower, convene and mobilize civil society, government entities and businesses to support the UAE’s sustainability agenda and deliver transformative impact at scale for the benefit of people and planet alike. 

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