Dubai residents take part in the Clean Up UAE 2018 campaign organised by Emirates Environmental Group. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The annual ‘EEG Clean Up UAE’ campaign reached Dubai after covering Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah and Abu Dhabi.

Volunteers of EEG — Emirates Environmental Group — have so far collected 32.5 tonnes of waste from five emirates.

The Dubai clean-up was held under the patronage and presence of the Ministry of Economy, which included the Minister of Economy Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, his undersecretaries, assistants and staff. The event was held in association with Dubai Municipality.

With more than 4,200 volunteers spread over seven locations in the emirate of Dubai, the participants collected about 25 tonnes of waste from the sites covering an area of 18sqkm.

In his opening speech, Abdula Aziz Al Midfa, vice chair of EEG, said: “Together, we are taking proactive steps to protect and preserve UAE’s unique ecosystem. The excitement and enthusiasm grows exponentially every year as more and more people partake in this large-scale cross-sector initiative that effectively promoted social change in the last 17 years.”

Habiba Al Marashi, chairperson of EEG, said the environmental legacy of the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan is in good hands as President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and the UAE leadership ensure a sustainable environment for future generations.

As an accredited body of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), EEG announced that the Clean Up UAE 2018 campaign will serve as an implementation platform for various sustainable development goals, including Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities; and Goal 13: Climate Action.

Al Mansouri said: “We know that growth almost always comes with some hidden costs, particularly ecological costs. In acknowledgement, the UAE has signed and ratified 16 international environmental agreements that govern the global environment. Environmental protection is the main objective of the UAE’s developmental policies that are aimed at increasing green areas, developing water resources, improving marine environment and protecting it from pollution, preserving fisheries and livestock, developing strategies to protect biodiversity.”