Monday 8 April 2019
The UAE has become the first signatory to the World Economic Forum’s ‘Scale 360’ initiative, which aims at moving towards a more circular economy while using less natural resources and reducing pollution to tackle climate change.
The initiative was signed from the UAE side by Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, and Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, and Borge Brende, President of the WEF, during their participation in the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa.
The signing translates the strategic directions of the UAE government into practical initiatives by creating and enabling a sustainable infrastructure to support the growth of the economic, social, and environmental sectors.
The UAE has set a target to increase the share of clean energy in the total energy mix from 25 percent to 50 percent by 2050. The country is also investing in energy efficiency, water conservation through humidity transfer and cloud seeding, and solid waste management.
Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi said: “The UAE’s success in linking development plans with environmental considerations is the result the leadership’s endless support in promoting development while maintaining the sustainability of our natural resources which contributed to a global leading model. We seek to promote Scale 360 to existing and future projections in order to ensure the conservation of resources, greater reliance on clean energy, the application of sustainable development standards, as well as create future opportunities for the youth in the region.”
Omar Al Olama said: “The UAE’s signing on Scale 360 launched by the World Economic Forum reflects the government’s commitment to employ the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s technologies for a better future for communities while joining the global efforts to sustain the environment for future generations.”
The initiative provides a model for a circular economy, which employs the technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, in order to keep resources in use for as long as possible, extract the maximum value from them whilst in use, then recover and regenerate products and material at the end of each service life.
The innovative economic concept aims at minimizing waste by designing recyclable and renewable goods to ensure their utilization even after the end of their shelf-life and in order to achieve efficient use of natural resources.
To address these challenges, the Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies are used today to envision a new way of managing resources. These technologies range from digital datasets linked to physical products using a product passport and Internet of Materials as well as blockchain-based schemes. Scale 360 would offer enormous potential that can reduce waste and recycling resource efficiently as the foundation of future cities and sustainable economy.
A WEF report indicated that over USD 1 trillion a year could be generated by 2025 for the global economy and 100,000 new jobs created within the next five years if companies focused on encouraging the build-up of circular supply chains to increase the rate of recycling, reuse, and remanufacture.