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

November 2020 - 272
Editorial
Forum
NAJIB SAAB
Biden Resets Climate Policy
NAJIB SAAB
When President Donald Trump leaves the White House in two months, some executive orders that he issued will depart with him
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Marco Lambertini, Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Maria Neira
Coronavirus is a warning to us to mend our broken relationship with nature
Marco Lambertini, Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Maria Neira
The world must embrace a recovery that involves sustainable farming and clean energy. Anything else is a false economy
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Meet the
 Editor-in-Chief
Najib Saab
 
 
Selected articles News
Earth Resurrection Day 22/4/2020
Najib Saab - 22/4/2020 - On 22 April half a century ago, 20 million Americans took to the streets, demanding serious action to protect the environment and preserve nature. This uprising, which remains the largest mass event in the world, triggered changes far beyond the United States borders. Earth Day, as it has been named, became an annual event across 192 countries. Its launch in 1970 coincided with other initiatives that prompted the birth of the modern global environmental movement. After the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment in 1972, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) was created, and it still leads international environmental work to this date. In the same year, the Club of Rome published its milestone report, "The Limits to Growth," which warned that the earth's ability to provide sustainable resources and absorb waste for the increasing billions of people is dwindling, and is in fact on the way to reach its limits. ...more
 
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
 
Surge in greenhouse gases sustained despite COVID lockdowns - U.N. 24/11/2020
Greenhouse gas concentrations climbed to a new record in 2019 and rose again this year despite an expected drop in emissions due to COVID-19 lockdowns, the World Meteorological Organization said on Monday, warning against complacency. ...more
 
Biden names Kerry as U.S. climate envoy, emphasizing diplomacy's role in the issue 24/11/2020
President-elect Joe Biden named former Secretary of State John Kerry as special climate envoy, his transition team said on Monday, a sign that Biden is putting the issue at the center of his foreign policy. ...more
 
"Direction of travel is set" in climate fight, says Paris accord architect 24/11/2020
A slew of international commitments to cut carbon emissions including from U.S. President-elect Joe Biden point to a bright future for the fight to save the environment, former U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres said. ...more
 
Europe's air quality can still be deadly despite progress, EEA says 24/11/2020
Many European citizens are exposed to harmful and sometimes illegal levels of pollution despite progress to improve air quality in recent years, the European Environment Agency said in a report on Monday. ...more
 
Australia moves into top three countries for renewable investment: research 24/11/2020
Australia has moved into the three most attractive countries in the world for renewables investment for the first time due to rapid solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment, research showed on Tuesday. ...more
 
Award winning Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi nature documentaries to be aired on Emirates airline 23/11/2020
Passengers onboard Emirates flights will arrive at their destination inspired by environmental causes as part of a collaboration with Environment Agency–Abu Dhabi (EAD). ...more
 
G20 determined to support African countries and tackle climate change 23/11/2020
Leaders of the world’s 20 biggest economies said in a final communique on Sunday they were determined to support African countries in overcoming the coronavirus crisis, including by exploring more sustainable financing options. ...more
 
EU denies gas plants a green finance tag, offers possible hydrogen loophole 23/11/2020
The European Commission on Friday proposed that power plants fuelled by natural gas would not be not classed as a sustainable investment in Europe, although plants could possibly gain a green label by burning some hydrogen. ...more
 
China-led shift to electric vehicles to help end 'oil era': study 23/11/2020
An aggressive China-led shift to electric vehicles is expected to slash global oil demand growth by 70% by 2030 and will help bring an end to the “oil era”, according to research by the Carbon Tracker think tank published on Friday. ...more
 
Asia overtakes United States in corporate climate disclosure, Arabesque says 23/11/2020
European companies are the leaders in corporate disclosure on greenhouse gas emissions but Asia overtook the United States to claim second place in 2019, according to an analysis of more than 2,000 of the largest companies by Arabesque. ...more
 
The Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi and IUCN launch international guidelines on Treasuring Fishers’ Knowledge for Policy Development and Safekeeping 20/11/2020
To commemorate the World Fisheries Day which is celebrated every year on November 21, the Environment Agency–Abu Dhabi (EAD) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), launched the IUCN Guidelines for the Gathering of Fishers’ Knowledge for Policy Development and Applied Use. ...more
 
French court gives Macron deadline to prove he's serious on climate 20/11/2020
France’s highest administrative court on Thursday gave the government three months to show it is enacting climate policies that will ensure it meets its commitments on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. ...more
 
Wildlife diseases poised to spread northwards as climate changes: study 20/11/2020
As the world’s climate warms, parasite-carried wildlife diseases will move north, with animals in cold far-north and high-altitude regions expected to suffer the most dramatic increases, warns a study to be published on Friday in the journal Science. ...more
 
Heatwaves caused record deaths as Britain struggled with coronavirus: study 20/11/2020
Heatwaves caused a record 2,556 excess deaths in Britain this summer as the country was struggling to contain the coronavirus pandemic, according to a government estimate published on Thursday. ...more
 
OMA to design Miami Beach’s First Underwater Public Sculpture Park and Artificial Reef in 2021 20/11/2020
BlueLab Preservation Society reveal plans for The ReefLine, a new 7 mile underwater public sculpture park, snorkel trail and artificial reef located off Miami Beach’s shoreline. ...more
 
Climate action investor group adds Saudi Aramco to focus list 19/11/2020
One of the world’s leading investor groups pushing for more corporate action on climate change said it has added Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest oil producer, to its list of target companies. ...more
 
EU carbon market emissions fell by 9.1% in 2019: EU Commission 19/11/2020
Greenhouse gas emissions regulated under Europe’s carbon market fell by 9.1% last year from a year earlier, the European Commission said in a report to the European Parliament and Council on Wednesday. ...more
 
Volkswagen welcomes German government's scheme to support low-emission cars 19/11/2020
Volkswagen on Wednesday said the German government's 3 billion euro ($3.57 billion) scheme to support low-emission cars sent a strong signal Berlin would help lift the country's key export industry out of the coronavirus and climate crises. ...more
 
Tristan da Cunha establishes a massive marine protected area 19/11/2020
The government of Tristan da Cunha, a four-island archipelago of about 250 people, has announced that it will be protecting approximately 700,000 square kilometers of its waters. ...more
 
McDonald’s introduces McPlant, its first plant-based burger 19/11/2020
Now that every major fast food chain on the planet seems to have introduced a vegan option, McDonald’s is finally getting with the times. Want to eat at the golden arches without making some animal pay for it? Meet McPlant. ...more
 
Radical changes needed to fix broken global food system by 2030 18/11/2020
A radical change is needed in the way we produce and consume food to eliminate hunger by 2030, it has been warned. ...more
 
Funding for climate disasters 'failing' those most vulnerable, says IFRC 18/11/2020
The number of disasters caused by extreme weather and climate-related events is surging, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said in a report on Tuesday, but funding is not getting to where it is most needed. ...more
 
Britain to ban new petrol cars and vans by 2030 on road to net zero emissions 18/11/2020
Britain will move up a ban on new petrol and diesel cars and vans to 2030 and is eyeing 250,000 new jobs as part of a green industrial revolution, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said as he tries to meet Britain’s net zero emissions climate target. ...more
 
UN approves extra steps to curb shipping emissions 18/11/2020
The United Nations shipping agency on Tuesday approved measures to boost energy efficiency in vessels as part of efforts to reduce the industry’s carbon footprint, a UN spokeswoman said. ...more
 
Brazil to track illegal Amazon wood exports using isotopes, president says 18/11/2020
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said on Tuesday his government in coming days will name countries that are importing wood illegally extracted from the Amazon. ...more
 
 
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