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Thursday, 07 December 2023

Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure Participates in the UAE Built Environment Sustainability Blueprint Roundtable at COP28

His Excellency Eng Sharif Al Olama, Undersecretary for Energy and Petroleum Affairs at the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, participated in the UAE Built Environment Sustainability Blueprint Roundtable, alongside Her Excellency Razan Al Mubarak, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP28.

Organised by the High-Level Climate Champions team and EmiratesGBC, the session aimed to gain insights on the current state of buildings and construction sector in the UAE, challenges and opportunities, best practice, and lessons learned, as well as next steps in co-delivering market and policy enablers for the sustainable transition of the sector.

Her Excellency Razan Al Mubarak said: “We are here because we know that buildings contribute 21% of global greenhouse gas emission. In the UAE, this number is slightly higher, as the building sector is responsible for 27% of our emissions according to 2019 numbers. We believe this sector promises to provide 85% of the emission reduction in the UAE by 2030. The momentum of the collaboration between the entities here is growing. With all entities present today, this meeting is a significant milestone to incubate working groups of leading developers into a core consultative group that supports the government in the next phase of climate policy as well as a key market mover.”   

His Excellency Eng Sharif Al Olama said: “Despite an increase in energy efficiency investment and lower energy intensity, the building and construction sector is way off track to reach net zero by 2050. Decarbonizing our built environment is the only way to manage rapid urbanization while reducing its adverse environmental effects and enhancing long-term sustainability. The private sector is a critical actor in closing the gap between the performance of the building sector and our decarbonization targets. Its active engagement allows us to tap into a wide pool of expertise and resources that support our objectives.”

He added: “We at the ministry actively develop essential regulations, policies, and initiatives as part of the National Demand Side Management (DSM) Program 2050. The program targets the most energy and water consuming sectors in the country: Built environment, transport, agriculture, and industry and aims to reduce energy demand by 40% and water use by 50% by 2050 compared to business-as-usual levels, which will support emission and cost reduction. Implementing the National DSM Program in the built environment is projected to contribute monetary savings of close to AED 139 billion and a reduction of 74 metric tons of CO2 emissions by 2050.”

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