- “For Our Emirates We Plant” oversees the planting of 2,000 trees planted in Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah by 641 entities
On the historic date 20.12.2020, Emirates Environmental Group (EEG) organised and conducted its annual tree planting campaign, “For Our Emirates We Plant”. This significant event was conducted at two locales in Ras Al Khaimah and Dubai.
Under the patronage and presence of H. E. Engr. Sheikh Salem Bin Sultan Bin Saqr Al-Qasimi, member of the Executive Council of the Government of Ras Al-Khaimah and Chairman of the Department of Civil Aviation, Government of Ras Al Khaimah, the tree planting in the emirate of RAK was conducted in the early morning at Skheiber, Al Minae Area. The second tree planting activity was organised in association with Dubai Municipality and Saih Al Salam Protected Area Management, at Saih Al Salam, Al Qudra in Dubai.
The event was successfully carried out due to the attendance and participation of people from all sectors of the society including government and private entities, academic institutions, families, students and many VIPs. These likeminded individuals with a mindset towards environmental sustainability, planted a total of 2,000 indigenous Ghaf and Sidra Tress in both sites. With proper nurture, these trees will reach maturity in 5-7 years and will help mitigate over 31 Metric Tonnes of Carbon Dioxide equivalence from the atmosphere annually.
Since the inception of EEGs afforestation programme in 2007, EEG has managed to plant 2,100,789 indigenous and desert tolerant plants all across UAE. These trees sequester 12,388 Metric Tonnes of CO2e from the atmosphere annually, which is equivalent to removing 2,564 cars of the road for a year. In the next decade, EEG will continue its legacy of improving and increasing the sustainable green spaces and creating carbon sinks in the UAE and mark its commitment to UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030) by planting more trees across the country.
Mrs. Habiba Al Mar’ashi, Chairperson of EEG said “The joint movement of UNEP and FAO at restoring ecosystem to negate over 26 gigatons of greenhouse gases is a wakeup call to the world of the urgent need for action at both local, regional and international level in the hope of achieving several of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations”. She further added that, “The year 2020 has seen a series of challenges, a trail for humanity. From the uncountable environmental disaster such as massive uncontrollable forest fires, locust swarms, heat waves, mass extinctions, hurricanes and the unexpected pandemic to the injustice, inequality, insecurity, poverty experienced by many; and so many more circumstances and occurrences raging throughout the globe. As social beings, the existential need to work together, to callout our faults and take actions to correct them is now.” Connecting the work of EEG, she continued by stating that; “EEG’s recycling and afforestation programmes are unique in the fact that they bring together people of all ages, status, gender, nationalities, occupation, religion and culture united towards the cause of sustainability, which ultimately ensures the waste diverted from landfills, protect natural habitats and ecosystems, create carbon sinks, promote a thriving flora and fauna population, and safeguard the dire need of food security, which all contribute to achieving of the UNSDGs”.
EEG has exceptionally blended its recycling programmes and projects with the annual tree planting. The entities who achieve recycling goals under these projects are automatically eligible to plant trees under their names at the end of the year. This year despite the pandemic outbreak and lockdown, EEG’s recycling participants from families, academic institutions and the corporate sector, participated in various projects including “One Root One Communi-Tree”, “Recycle. Reforest. Repeat”, “Green Call”, “Paper Walk” and the “Neighbourhood Recycling Project” in addition to “Green December” With their active participation and collective efforts, they successfully planted 1,000 of trees at Skheiber, Ras Al Khaimah and 1,000 in Saih Al Salam, Dubai.
This year, “For our Emirates We Plant” project saw the participation of 92 companies, 36 schools, 56 individuals and 184 families. The pandemic did not stop these steadfast entities from participating the preservation of the environment, a lesson to learn for all. The achievement of EEG’s members and participants are truly visualised into fruition by having a tree planted under one’s own name, which is a gift from EEG to all its participating entities; a show of appreciation for their dedication to preserve the environment and giving it a significant importance in life. This tactile approach to afforestation, by directly involving the society and its entities is one of the rare moments in life to remember and carry on forward as an experience required to protect our beloved Earth.
EEG would like to thank H. E. Engr. Sheikh Salem Bin Sultan Bin Saqr Al-Qasimi for his resolute and unswerving support towards EEG’s afforestation programme. His active participation and support in providing the land for planting trees in Ras al Khaimah is greatly appreciated. In addition, EEG would also like to thank the Management of Saih Al salam Protected Area for providing a site at Dubai for planting these trees and Dubai Municipality for the saplings. EEG is also grateful to Orient Irrigation and Almarai Dairy company for providing the logistics and snacks required for the event.
Emirates Environmental Group (EEG): EEG is a professional working group established in 1991 devoted to protecting the environment through the means of education, action programmes and community involvement. The organisation is open to men and women of all nationalities. EEG is actively encouraged and supported by concerned local and federal government agencies. It is the first environmental NGO in the world to be ISO 14001 certified and the only organisation of its kind in the UAE with accredited status to the United Nations Convention to Combating Desertification (UNCCD) and the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), EEG is a member of the UN Global Compact, the International Union of Conservation for Nature (IUCN).