Abu Dhabi: The UAE Pavilion at the 7th edition of Floriade Expo 2022 in The Netherlands highlighted the importance of mangroves, one of the most crucial halophytes to the UAE’s ecosystem, covering more than 150 square kilometres of the country.
The pavilion also highlighted UAE’s efforts to conserve mangroves and support various efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change.
Jamal Al Musharakh, UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Commissioner General of the UAE Pavilion at Floriade Expo 2022, hosted a number of dignitaries, visitors, and students. He said: “One of the most valuable halophytes (halophyte is a salt-tolerant plant that grows in soil or waters of high salinity) within the UAE’s natural environment is the mangrove, nicknamed the ‘Guardian of the Coast’.”
“Mangroves sustain entire ecosystems, support plants and animals, and help them grow and develop. The protection of the mangroves is a legacy that we have been entrusted with by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who many years ago initiated a massive forestation drive to increase the number of mangrove trees in the UAE, followed by extensive campaigns to increase its planting to reach 100 million trees by 2030,” he added.
“This legacy encourages us to double our efforts and expertise to overcome various global challenges in relation to climate change. The UAE is committed to enhancing and protecting its natural habitats, which in turn will help the country confront environmental challenges,” Al Musharakh continued.
Anne-Marie Goeritsma, Floriade Expo 2022 commissioner-general, said: “The UAE and the Netherlands share fruitful historical relations, as they have partnered in many sectors, especially in environmental conservation and horticulture. In this vein, we are working to enhance our relations with the UAE and continue our focus on food and water challenges facing the world. We wanted the exhibition to play an active role in enhancing the quality of life for future cities and provide many solutions that serve to preserve green environments.
The mangroves are one of the most important halophytic (salt-tolerant) plants featured in the UAE Pavilion at Floriade Expo 2022 for their value, importance, and conservation efforts. The exhibition also features other types of plants: salicornia, quinoa, microalgae, and seaweed.
The UAE Pavilion design, supervised by the UAE Ministry of Culture and Youth, is a creative collaboration between the UAE-based Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation and Pragma, an architecture firm, with Tellart, its Dutch partner. Tellart contributed to the design of the interior gallery and content.