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Addressing to a Press conference at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi to launch ADSW 2020, Dr Thani Bin Ahmad Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment. Picture by Anwar Ahmad

Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2020 (ADSW), one of the largest sustainability gatherings in the world and a platform for accelerating sustainable development, will take place in the capital from January 11 to 18, senior officials from the UAE Government announced in Abu Dhabi on Monday.

2020 will also be marked as a year of preparation for the UAE, as it readies for its half centennial in 2021 and looks forward to the next 50 years of development. Through its Vision 2021, the country will achieve a number of key sustainability targets this year, including the completion of the 800 megawatt third phase of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai.

Addressing to a press conference at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi to launch ADSW 2020, Dr Thani Bin Ahmad Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said: “Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week presents to the world a shining example of the UAE’s active involvement in tackling the challenges faced by the international community – an approach that reflects the visionary commitment of our leaders to spearheading the way to a cleaner and better tomorrow.”

He pointed out that ADSW 2020 follows the UN’s global call for a decade of action to deliver the SDGs by 2030, as well as coinciding with the UAE’s year of preparation for the country’s golden jubilee.

The minister noted that in setting the tone and outlining strategies for the next five decades, ADSW 2020 will up the ante on sustainability.

“Recognising that young people help fuel our sustainability drive, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment will host the Climate Innovations Exchange – CLIX – as part of its engagements during ADSW 2020,” he said.

CLIX connects entrepreneurs and investors to deliver sustainable climate solutions. The event has marked year-on-year growth of 67 per cent in applications and 54 per cent in participating countries,” Al Zeyoudi said.

Held under the patronage of His Highness Shaikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, ADSW 2020 will host heads of state, government ministers, policymakers, industry experts, innovators and future sustainability leaders.

The 17th United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals were adopted by all UN member states as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the UN has called for a “decade of ambitious action” to deliver Goals by 2030.

380 million jobs

Achieving targets set under the SDGs could open up $12 trillion of market opportunities worldwide and create 380 million jobs, according to estimates, with as many as 12.4 million jobs generated in the Middle East and North Africa region by 2030.

“The UAE is aligned with the global sustainability agenda and is committed to being a regional leader in sustainable development, as evidenced by our hosting of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week,” said Dr Sultan Bin Ahmad Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of Masdar.

“ADSW brings together global leaders and policymakers from a wide range of fields to address sustainability and explore how we can work together to leverage digital transformation and other technological trends to make a better world for all of us,” he said.

The ADSW has provided a global platform for the sustainability community every year since 2008 in order to align more closely with the UN SDGs and the UAE Vision 2021.

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week has grown from 11,000 attendees representing 84 countries to 38,000 attendees representing 175 countries in 2019, making it one of the world’s leading sustainability gatherings.

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar, the host of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, said, “The statistics speak for themselves: since 2008, attendance has more than tripled to over 35,000, while the number of participating countries has more than doubled to 175. The wide scope of ADSW today shows the size of the business opportunity presented by clean technologies and the sustainability sector, with deals worth an estimated US$11 billion announced last year alone.”