Private Sector has significant role to play in reducing the UAE’s ecological footprint
Abu Dhabi – May 24, 2012
Organizations committed to becoming increasingly environmentally sustainable attended a workshop focused on sharing practices and proposing solutions for energy and water reduction held by Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF’s (EWS-WWF) Heroes of the UAE Private Sector Programme, and the programme’s technical supporter, Ernst & Young.
Organizations in the UAE have a significant role to play in reducing the country’s footprint and tackling climate change by saving energy and water since the private sector and industry contribute 30% to the UAE’s high Ecological Footprint (based on the 2008 Ecological Footprint Initiative data) . A majority of the UAE’s Footprint is associated with carbon emissions due to energy and water consumption. EWS-WWF’s Heroes of the UAE Private Sector programme is supporting organizations across the UAE with those savings.
Under the umbrella of the Heroes of the UAE campaign, the Heroes Private Sector Programme was launched in 2010 by EWS-WWF to raise awareness and inspire action to reduce energy and water consumption so that we can tackle climate change and reduce the Ecological Footprint.
Corporate Sustainability project manager at EWS-WWF, Tamara Withers said: “Facilitating large-scale energy and water savings requires a number of initiatives – including establishing platforms, such as this workshop, where organizations can share their experiences and lessons learned in reducing energy and water consumption. Through this workshop we can also begin to identify solutions to various barriers preventing large scale reductions.”
“This workshop has been a great opportunity to exchange knowledge and ideas in a meaningful and constructive way,” said Nayeem Farooqui, Engineering Consultant at Liberty Investment Co. LLC. : “During the last six months, we went through the necessary steps to implement energy and water consumption reduction measures, and we have submitted our case study to EWS-WWF for verification. We learned a lot from our experience and we are glad to get the opportunity to share these lessons with others. We believe organizations can contribute positively to the environment without compromising business interests, and we hope to see more collaboration platforms in the future.”
Many of the companies who attended the workshop are working towards becoming verified Corporate Heroes under the Heroes of the UAE Private Sector Programme and are committed to achieving three pledges:
1) Develop and implement a measurable strategy to reduce carbon dioxide emissions associated with energy and water consumption by 10% each, over 12 continuous months.
2) Document the results achieved and submit to Heroes of the UAE to demonstrate their efforts and to help other organisations learn from their example.
3) Commit to developing and implementing a long term strategy for the organisation for year on year for carbon footprint reduction and allow independent auditors access to the environmental audits and review activities.
During the next phase, case studies submitted by companies working towards becoming verified Corporate Heroes, will undergo third party verification by Ernst & Young, the programme’s technical supporter.