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Environment and development AL-BIA WAL-TANMIA Leading Arabic Environment Magazine

August 2019 - 257
Editorial
Forum
NAJIB SAAB
Trump is transient coincidence, climate change is lasting reality
NAJIB SAAB
When I first met him 20 years ago, I did not notice that the veteran international banker had a particular interest in environment and climate change
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PADDY PADMANATHAN
Ten Years of ACWA Power and Corporate Responsibility
PADDY PADMANATHAN
Since 2007 the Arab region has undergone a number of changes because of economic cycles
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Yihui Wang
AFED Synthesizes Decade of Arab State of the Environment Reports
Yihui Wang
The Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED) has published a report titled, ‘Arab Environment in 10 Years’, which
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Meet the
 Editor-in-Chief
Najib Saab
 
 
Selected articles News
Wastewater Treatment: Overview, Types, Energy Consumption & Actual State in Lebanon with Proposal of Using Renewable Energy 3/7/2019
This paper provides an overview of Wastewater Treatment issue in Lebanon, past, present, and Future. The paper briefs the status of wastewater types adopted in the general study approved by Lebanese Government to cover the country at the level of design and implementation along with the relevant energy consumption. Accordingly, we shall consider that paper as a recapitulation on exerted efforts by both Government and Council of Development and Reconstruction (CDR) to reach reliable and sustainable wastewater network and wastewater treatment plants. The perspective that we intend as a conclusion is the potential of renewable energy exploitation and treated wastewater reuse assisting the path of autonomy of WWTP’s and improvement of the energy management in wastewater treatment based on the integration of renewable energy and biogas. ...more
 
Climate change, conflict: Strategic risks for 2019 11/2/2019
Climate-fueled security risks will overwhelm the Middle East in 2019, while enmity and hostility rather than unity will characterize Europe; the U.S. will tumble in its war on terrorism, and an unsustainable future will daunt Russia. These are some of the global security challenges anticipated in a report entitled “Strategic Outlook 2019,” carrying the theme “Towards a Zero-Sum World ...more
 
Environmental Conservation in the UAE: An Authentic Cultural Heritage and Experience 8/1/2018
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has prioritized the conservation of the environment and natural resources, both being integral to its national heritage, almost since the establishment of the federation in 1971. The founding father of the UAE, late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, considered the environment and sustainable development to be cornerstones of the nation’s progress. ...more
 
PREVENTING DISEASE THROUGH HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT: ASSESSMENT OF THE BURDEN OF DISEASE FROM ENVIRONMENTAL RISKS IN ARAB COUNTRIES 1/6/2017
The realization of how many diseases and illnesses can be prevented by focusing on the management of environmental risks adds impetus to efforts to encourage preventive health measures through all available policies, strategies, interventions, technologies and knowledge. This is generally true to sustain development in most countries of the world, but is more significant in Arab countries where environmental risks are higher and rates of development slower. ...more
 
FactCheck: The facts on Trump's EPA nominee 15/12/2016
Scott Pruitt, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has made some questionable claims related to global warming, fracking and the Clean Power Plan. ...more
 
AFED Secretariat Annual Work Report 2016 10/11/2016
Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED) is closing its most challenging year, in a region overwhelmed by security and economic turmoil. Although we continue to believe that, after all sorts of conflicts and wars, people will still need to preserve and develop their natural capital that they need for survival, AFED is being stripped of minimum resources to execute its mission ...more
 
Waste trade: exporting countries responsible to return refused waste. Interview with Rolph Payet. 2/3/2016
As part of its cover story about Waste trade, in the March-April 2016 issue, Al-Bia Wal-Tanmia magazine conducted this interview with Rolph Payet, executive secretary of the Basel Convention on the control of transboundary movements of hazardous wastes and their disposal. ...more
 
Strong climate deal good for Arab countries 4/12/2015
Climate change, once considered an issue for the future, has now moved firmly into the present. Few days before a new climate change deal is due to be agreed in Paris, the question is no longer whether there will be an agreement but what shape and how strong it will be. ...more
 
Sustainable consumption: AFED’s 2015 report and public opinion survey 19/11/2015
In 2009, an Arab Regional Strategy for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) was adopted by the League of Arab States. This was one of the first such regional strategies to be developed before the RIO+20 summit, which had adopted the 10 Year Framework of Programs (10YFP) on SCP. Consequently, the Arab Region moved forward and became the first region to develop and adopt a Roadmap for Implementation of the 10YFP on SCP at the regional level in June 2013. However, as is the case in most Arab regional strategies, both the roadmap and the SCP regional strategy are far from being implemented at the national levels. Development and implementation of SCP strategies in most Arab countries are still lagging. ...more
 
ACWA Power Develops 200 MW Solar PV Plant in Dubai: 5.84 Cents per kWh Sets New Global Pricing Benchmark 19/11/2015
In March 2015, the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with a consortium of ACWA Power and TSK for a 200 MW net solar photo-voltaic (PV), under Phase II of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the Middle East’s largest renewable energy park. The bid tariff set a new global pricing benchmark for renewable energy generated from utility scale PV panels at USD 5.84 cents/kWh without subsidies. The second phase is based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model and is intended to be operational by April 2017. The project, which occupies 4.5 Km2, will help to achieve a reduction of 400,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. ...more
 
Impact of phasing out water subsidies in Tunisia and Morocco on consumption: a general equilibrium approach 19/11/2015
Morocco and Tunisia are considered among the countries where the scarcity of water resources may cause a serious constraint to the development of their economies. The agricultural sector is the most important consumer of water with more than 80% of the total. Moreover, both countries have shown an increase in the share of GDP accounted for by the nonfarm sectors, which imply an increase in residential water demand as well as manufacturing and service sectors. Consequently, if production growth in the non-farm sectors requires a proportional increase of water demand factor , then water can be a major constraint to economic growth in both countries. ...more
 
GENETICALLY ENGINEERED CLIMATE-RESILIENT SEEDS AS A POSSIBLE RESPONSE TO CLIMATE CHANGE-INDUCED FOOD SHORTAGES 4/9/2015
Climate change is predicted to have dramatic impacts on agricultural production globally. Although food production in some regions of the world may benefit from increasing average temperatures, most of the world will face severe challenges in adapting agricultural systems to the predicted climatic changes. ...more
 
Food Security and Climate Change: the UAE Experience 15/5/2015
The Arab world faces critical challenges in ensuring its food security. Our region is already the world’s largest net importer of essentials such as cereals and sugar, low water supplies in the region mean that expanding agricultural production is difficult, and population growth means that more people must be fed each year. In many ways, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) presents an exemplary case of this challenge. ...more
 
The UNDP-CEDRO Program’s Solar Power Initiatives 5/3/2015
The CEDRO project, a UNDP executed program, has been established since 2007, originally through a generous grant from the Government of Spain, through the Lebanon Recovery Fund, of approximately $10 million. At that time, renewable energy at large, and solar power in specific (with the exception of residential solar hot water systems), have not yet begun to be well propagated and/established. ...more
 
Conflict, refugees and food insecurity in the Arab region 5/3/2015
Conflict has a direct and indirect effect on food security, undermining it through various channels. Its direct effects are numerous – the destruction of infrastructure and machinery; death of livestock; razing of farm land,; and blocked access to markets for producers, distributors, and consumers. Indirectly, conflict discourages productive investment in agriculture, thereby reducing the availability of food. It strips government of tax revenues that prevent the establishment of social safety nets which promote food security. ...more
 
Virtual Water Trade as a Policy Instrument Contributing to the Achievement of Food Security in the GCC Countries 5/3/2015
The concept of ‘virtual water’ has been introduced by Tony Allan in the early nineties (Allan, 1993; 1994). However, it took nearly a decade to get global recognition for the importance of the concept of achieving regional and global water security. The "virtual water" content of a product, as often defined, is the volume of water used to produce the product, measured at the place where the product was actually produced (i.e., a production site specific definition). ...more
 
Review of the likely impact of climate change on agriculture in selected Arab countries 5/3/2015
Climate change is expected to impact agriculture in the region in one way or another. Below is a short review of the anticipated impact of climate change on agricultural in selected Arab countries. ...more
 
How should we tackle natural conservation of Lebanon?: Japanese Ambassador `s observation 5/3/2015
The East Mediterranean, a cradle of the civilizations, is blessed with a diverse and plentiful nature. But this nature is endangered. Nowadays we can observe that the growth range of the Lebanese Cedars has diminished quite drastically. ...more
 
Developing Fish Resources in the Arab World 7/1/2015
The Arab World is rich with large fish resources providing health and cheap proteins to Arabs, compared to animal proteins from other resources. Since the Arab World suffers a shortage in grazing and animal feed resources, which limits the capability to expand meat production, it is very important to sustain the contribution of fish resources in providing animal proteins to the Arab food basket; actually, this sector must be developed to sustainably increase its contribution to the Arab food security system. ...more
 
The Amazon is on fire - how bad is it? 23/8/2019
Thousands of fires are ravaging the Amazon rainforest in Brazil - the most intense blazes for almost a decade. ...more
 
Blame humans for starting the Amazon fires, environmentalists say 23/8/2019
The Amazon is burning -- and humans are likely to blame. ...more
 
Florida scientists induce spawning of Atlantic coral in lab for first time 23/8/2019
Scientists in Florida have artificially induced reproductive spawning of an endangered Atlantic coral species for the first time in an aquarium setting, a breakthrough they say holds great promise in efforts to restore depleted reefs in the wild. ...more
 
Trade in giraffes to be regulated for first time: CITES 23/8/2019
Countries voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to regulate international trade in giraffes, an endangered species, and in their skins and other parts, overcoming objections by southern African states and drawing praise from conservationists. ...more
 
Ditch cars to meet climate change targets, say British MPs 23/8/2019
People will have to get out of their cars if the UK is to meet its climate change targets, MPs say. ...more
 
Makkah province ranks as 2nd most polluted province in the world in a new Greenpeace report focused on air pollution 22/8/2019
Greenpeace revealed yesterday the results of a global analysis, using satellite data collected by NASA identifying the world’s worst sources of sulphur dioxide (SO2) pollution, an irritant gas known to affect human health and one of the main pollutants contributing to deaths from air pollution worldwide. ...more
 
Microplastics in water not harmful to humans, says WHO report 22/8/2019
Microplastics are increasingly found in drinking water, but there is no evidence so far that this poses a risk to humans, according to a new assessment by the World Health Organization. ...more
 
Igniting global outrage, Brazil's Bolsonaro baselessly blames NGOs for Amazon fires 22/8/2019
Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday accused non-governmental organizations of burning down the Amazon rainforest to hurt his government, as a growing global outcry against the wildfires raged through social media. ...more
 
China considers testing no-go zones for gasoline vehicles: ministry 22/8/2019
China is considering testing a ban on gasoline-powered vehicles in some parts of the country and may set a timetable to eventually phase out such vehicles, according to the industry ministry. ...more
 
Conservation, animal rights groups sue Trump over weakening U.S. wildlife protections 22/8/2019
Environmental and animal rights groups on Wednesday sued the Trump administration over its proposal to revise the U.S. Endangered Species Act, seeking to block changes that they say will roll back protections of animals at risk of extinction. ...more
 
Nordic PMs, CEOs sign joint declaration on climate change 21/8/2019
Nordic prime ministers and business leaders sought on Tuesday to reinforce the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement and the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) by signing a joint declaration to promote public-private partnerships. ...more
 
China hopes U.S. will come back to the table at Chile climate talks 21/8/2019
China hopes to welcome the United States ‘back to the negotiating table’ to discuss global efforts to limit climate change at a United Nations summit to be hosted by Chile in December, its top climate change envoy said on Tuesday. ...more
 
From bin bags to planes: Shell, BA plan EU's first waste-to-jet fuel plant 21/8/2019
Aeroplanes could be powered by jet fuel made from household rubbish from 2024 under plans by Shell, British Airways and Velocys to build Europe’s first large-scale plant to produce jet fuel from domestic and commercial waste. ...more
 
Chile to account for costs of climate change in budget 21/8/2019
Chile will begin budgeting for the costs of fighting climate change, Finance Minister Felipe Larraín announced on Tuesday, as receding glaciers and drought put a squeeze on water and natural resources in the world’s top copper producer. ...more
 
Conservationists push at CITES conference to ban trophy hunting 21/8/2019
A group of activists is trying to persuade an international conservation conference to ban trophy hunting, which outrages some animal lovers but has long been tolerated by some environmentalists as a way of protecting wildlife. ...more
 
Beloved baby dugong's death puts spotlight on plastic threat to marine life 20/8/2019
Marine conservationists have decried the death of a beloved baby dugong found with a stomach filled with plastic, telling of the need to turn the tide against single-use items. ...more
 
Brazilian states bypass Bolsonaro to discuss rainforest protection funding directly 20/8/2019
Brazilian states containing the country’s Amazon rainforest said they want to negotiate directly with European nations who fund projects to curb deforestation after changes proposed by the federal government led Norway and Germany to suspend donations. ...more
 
Greenland’s ice sheet lost 197 billion tons of ice in July 20/8/2019
What melts faster than an ice cream cone on a sweltering summer day? Greenland’s ice sheet. In July, the world’s second biggest ice sheet lost 197 billion tons of ice and increased sea levels by about half a millimeter. On August 15 alone, Greenland’s ice sheet had a major meltdown, losing 11 billion tons of surface ice to the ocean, scientists reported. ...more
 
China provides $1 billion in 'green' finance to coal projects in first half of the year 20/8/2019
Chinese financial institutions provided at least $1 billion in “green” financing to coal-related projects in the first half of this year, a review of financial data showed, with fossil fuels still playing a major role in Beijing’s energy strategy. ...more
 
Chattanooga becomes first 100% solar-powered airport in US 20/8/2019
Tennessee’s fourth largest city, Chattanooga, became the first American airport to be 100 percent solar powered – and joins only a handful of airports who claim the same across the world. The $5 million dollar solar farm project has been seven years in the making with funding by the Federal Aviation Administration. ...more
 
To bee or not to bee: how the UAE is working to stop a key species dying out 19/8/2019
Global warming, industrial agriculture and habitat destruction are causing global bee populations to plummet, threatening ecosystems and delicate food webs that sustain humans and animals alike. ...more
 
Iceland unveils memorial plaque for lost glacier 19/8/2019
Iceland unveiled a plaque to its Okjokull ice sheet on Sunday, the first of the country’s hundreds of glaciers to melt away due to climate change. ...more
 
Protecting Singapore from rising sea levels could cost S$100 billion 19/8/2019
Protecting Singapore against rising sea levels could cost S$100 billion ($72 billion) or more over 100 years, its prime minister said on Sunday, as the low-lying island-state makes preparations to mitigate the impact of global warming. ...more
 
Denmark sees resolution soon to EU rift on 2050 climate goal 19/8/2019
The new energy and climate minister of Denmark, a frontrunner in fighting climate change, said on Friday he was confident fellow EU countries would soon agree to go carbon-neutral by 2050 despite resistance in the east of the bloc. ...more
 
Sharks, elephants and precious wood in balance at wildlife talks 19/8/2019
The fate of mako sharks, African elephants and their ivory, and precious wood used to make musical instruments are on the agenda of member states attending negotiations of the U.N. wildlife watchdog opening on Saturday, officials said. ...more
 
 
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