Throughout his 18 months of campaigning for the presidency of the United States, Donald Trump made no secret of his disdain for those who pursue international efforts to roll back the effects of climate change. In effect, the president-elect believes those who advocate controlling carbon emissions are peddling an environmental agenda that is based on hocus pocus politics and science. Indeed, there are many miners and steelworkers across the rust-belt states of the US that cast their votes for his presidency on the basis of his support for coal — and burning more of it to generate power and to fuel furnaces.
Whether those policies on the campaign trail were just empty words, or whether he is a committed advocate for carbon fuels, remains to be seen. But what is clear is that his views — and those of the rust-belt voters who supported him — are now in a minority. For too long and for too many, the cause of environmental change has been a fight that is crucial to the green future of this planet.
The battle for climate change has been hard-fought and hard-won and nations finally agreed in Paris 12 months ago to arrive at a global consensus to curb greenhouse gas emissions and the principles of compensation.
Over the current two-week period, nations from around the world are gathering in Morocco for United Nations climate talks, determined to build on the hard work that went into last year’s ground-breaking accord in Paris. The UAE has always been a proud and determined supporter of making this planet greener and has for long contributed to advancements in renewable energy. A high-level delegation of some 100 officials, led by Saeed Mohammad Al Tayer, the vice-chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, is now in Marrakesh for Cop22, which is due to wrap up next Friday. Our Government and its officials played a key role in the negotiations that resulted in the Paris Agreement in 2015 and the Dubai Declaration in October set a challenge for global leadership and announced a fund worth Dh100 billion to realise green projects.
Within five years, the UAE plans to meet more than a quarter of its energy needs from clean sources, either through harnessing the heat of the sun or the power of the atom. As building codes are progressive, they can ensure that the principles of energy-efficiency are enshrined in its pages and come to life in its projects. And Masdar will continue to lead globally in providing a totally new concept in energy-efficient living.