ABU DHABI: Dr. Abdullah Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Infrastructure Development, has affirmed that meeting sustainability standards have become one of the most important criteria for the ministry in approving infrastructure projects, saying that “implementing these standards is no longer a luxury but an urgent need to ensure economic and investment returns.”

In a statement to the Emirates News Agency, WAM, Dr. Al Nuaimi underlined the ministry’s main efforts in implementing sustainability standards, mainly the use of artificial intelligence in the construction and maintenance of various projects. Additionally, he said that prominent efforts are being made to ensure the widespread use of LED technology in road lighting and in powering electric vehicle charging stations, as well as water treatment projects. These environmentally-friendly efforts will help achieve sustainability standards, he said.

“The ministry has implemented innovative standards in the recycling of materials used for road paving operations through the use of recyclable asphalt and other initiatives and projects,” Dr. Al Nuaimi stated, adding that sustainability, being environmentally-friendly, and reducing consumption are key objectives of the ministry’s strategy.

“In line with the ministry’s role in supporting the UAE Vision 2021 ... we have developed innovative solutions in the area of sustainability and green buildings, as we seek to overcome the challenges associated with the depletion of energy sources through the use of artificial intelligence in infrastructure projects,” he said.

Sustainability in the UAE, he said, is not the result of the moment, but has existed since the establishment of the union by the UAE’s Founding Father, the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and one which he practised daily.

Al Nuaimi concluded by saying that the decisions made by the UAE government today — including UAE’s Vision 2021 — are to reinforce existing achievements in the field and make the UAE a country with a clear global footprint in promoting sustainability in all walks of life.