MOCCAE unveils pledge designed to boost private sector’s contribution to UAE’s Net Zero by 2050 initiative

The pledge is said to be part of MOCCAE’s initiatives focused on scaling up the UAE’s climate action

The UAE Climate-Responsible Companies Pledge has been unveiled by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE). The pledge aims to increase the engagement of the private sector in the country’s decarbonisation drive in line with the UAE Net Zero by 2050 initiative.

The pledge is said to form the nucleus of future collaboration among the private sector, NGOs, and international organisations, including Emirates Nature in association with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The latter is said to be a strategic implementation partner to the pledge and will look to support private sector entities as they move towards implementing their Net Zero plans.

The launch of the pledge is said to be part of MOCCAE’s initiatives focused on scaling up the UAE’s climate action in response to the call of the Glasgow Climate Pact, an outcome of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), for countries to seek higher GHG emission reduction targets.

In May 2022, four regional experts spoke to Middle East Consultant about the region’s Net Zero journey.

“We are pleased to introduce the UAE Climate-Responsible Companies Pledge, and there’s no better place to do so than at NDCA, where we build rapport with all sectors to raise their climate ambition and turn them into active partners in our Net Zero drive. The pledge will help us – the UAE government – engage with entities that are keen to make an active contribution to our climate neutrality movement, and align their efforts to achieve our common objective. I invite all companies to show that they care about their impact on our climate, and that they’re ready and willing to translate their commitment into action by signing the UAE Climate-Responsible Companies Pledge,” said Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment.

The launch took place as part of the fourth installment of the National Dialogue for Climate Ambition (NDCA), a series of sector-specific assemblies aimed at establishing a national sustainability outlook and informing the country’s pursuit of climate neutrality, MOCCAE noted. The fourth NDCA took place under the theme ‘Roadmap to achieve net zero in the hospitality sector’.

The event saw 21 companies across key sectors, such as cement, aluminum, and steel, join the pledge including BEEAH, Emerson, Emirates Nature-WWF, Majid Al Futtaim Group, Standard Chartered Bank, HSBC, Masdar, Emirates Global Aluminium, Emirates Steel Arkan Group, Aldar Properties, Emirates Environmental Group, Strata, Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat), Chalhoub Group, Pure Harvest, AESG, Taka Solutions, Lafarge Emirates Cement, EY, EV Lab, and TotalEnergies. In February 2021, developer Arada inked a deal with MOCCAE to boost environmental sustainability.

In June 2022, SNC-Lavalin launched its ‘Engineering Net Zero in the GCC’ report, which is designed to help the region achieve its Net Zero carbon targets.

MOCCAE said that the organisations have committed to stepping up their collective efforts to combat climate change by measuring and reporting their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in a transparent manner, developing ambitious science-based plans to reduce their carbon footprint, and sharing these plans with the UAE government to contribute to achieving the national Net Zero target by 2050.

In addition, the signatories have pledged to factor in climate change mitigation and adaptation as core values and principles of their businesses and operational models, and adopt an all-inclusive approach that engages youth, women, and vulnerable segments of society in developing their Net Zero plans.

The keen interest of companies to sign the pledge reflects the awareness of private sector entities of the serious threat of climate change and its adverse impacts on the environment, food security, water security, and public health, MOCCAE concluded.

In an exclusive interview with Middle East Construction News in July 2022, WSP’s Sophia Kee warned that there’s a 93% certainty that the world will hit new temperature highs in the next five years.

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