News

Algae biofuel research at COP18 highlighted by ICAO president
17 December 2012

Algae biofuel research being conducted at Qatar University was praised by the president of the council of the International Civil Aviation Organization, Roberto Kobeh González. González toured the location as part of his trip to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP18) in Doha, Qatar. As part of his COP18 attendance, González presented a status update of the ICOA’s progress on biofuels and other carbon mitigation efforts.

The university’s research is being completed in collaboration with Qatar Airways and Qatar Science and Technology Park. Now in its third year, focuses on microalgae and cyanobacteria strains unique to Qatar. These microorganisms grow well in extreme heat, strong sunlight and highly saline waters.

According to information published by the university, the research group grew cultures of these strains, eliminating variations least adapted to Qatar’s environmental conditions. Production was scaled up at the laboratory level. Lipids extracted from the algae and cyanobacteria were converted into biofuel. The carbohydrate portion of the biomass was also converted to biofuel a biofuel, specifically ethanol. Currently, work is underway to scale up cultivation to 25,000 litre (6,604 gallon) research ponds. If the project continues to show success, a 1.5 million liter pilot-scale plant could be developed.

 

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UN Climate Change Conference ‘a moment of celebration’
11 December 2012

The 2012 United Nations Climate Change Conference was 'a moment of celebration' said by senior member of the committee that organised the historic event. Fahad Bin Mohammed Al-Attiya, the Chairman of the Organising Sub-Committee for COP18/CMP8 Doha, cited the second commitment period for the Kyoto Protocol for another eight years and several other key achievements of the negotiations, saying that he, "shared the joy of having come a long way on a long journey." Speaking at a press conference immediately after the final agreement was reached, Mr Al Atiyya said, "All of that happened here in Doha in the past two weeks. So it is absolutely something that I and many of my colleagues around this room feel extremely proud, to be part of the team that produced COP18/CMP8 Doha, and share part of that success going forward."

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UN climate talks extend Kyoto Protocol
11 December 2012

 Countries meeting at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP 18) that ended in Doha, Qatar on the weekend agreed on a firm timetable to adopt a universal climate agreement by 2015, and launched a new commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol. They further agreed on a path to raise the necessary ambition to respond to climate change, endorsed the completion of new institutions, and agreed on ways to deliver scaled-up climate finance and technology to developing countries. The Kyoto Protocol, the only existing and binding agreement under which developed countries commit to cutting greenhouse gases, has been amended so that it will continue as of 1 January 2013. The first commitment period ends on 31 December 2012. The length of the second commitment period will be eight years.

 

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Today is the day - Sustainability leaders gather at the Sustainable Innovation Forum, Doha
06 December 2012

Today is the day – Sustainability leaders gather at the Sustainable Innovation Forum, Doha, 6th December, 2012.

As COP18 Qatar draws to a close, the Sustainable Innovation Forum takes place today on the 6th December at the 5-star Intercontinental Hotel, Doha. The forum will review and evaluate the outcomes from the UNFCCC COP discussions and will highlight the future challenges that will need to be tackled across 2013.

The forum is the leading business and government event alongside COP18. Bringing together leaders from all corners of the globe to discuss the actions and solutions needed to progress global sustainability, the forum will also showcase the contributions that are required by all stakeholders from the green business arena.

Led by Platinum Sponsor, OSRAM, the forum is supported by an impressive range of international corporates as well as leading institutions from the Middle East. Speakers, led by Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director and Under Secretary General of the United Nations, will debate the topics of the day through a variety of panel sessions, Practitioners Debates and through keynote speeches.

A unique part of the forum is the ‘Future Influencers’ session, led by Harvard Business Review in partnership with Siemens, which will be broadcast live to a global audience of online viewers, truly connecting the forum with the international sustainability community.

Full coverage of the forum, photos and videos will be available on this site following the closure of the forum, so watch this space…

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South Africa hands over climate baton
27 November 2012

South African International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane officially handed over the UN climate change presidency as this year's UN climate summit (COP 18) got under way in Doha, Qatar on Monday. Thousands of government representatives, international organizations and civil society members gathered in the Qatari capital as the United Nations Climate Change Conference kicked off with a call to build on and implement previously agreed decisions to curb global carbon emissions by the year 2020.

During last year's COP 17 gathering in Durban, South Africa, 194 countries agreed on a package of decisions - known as the Durban Platform - which include the launch of a protocol or legal instrument that would apply to all members, a second commitment period for the Kyoto Protocol, and the launch of the Green Climate Fund, which was created to help developing nations protect themselves from climate impacts and build their own sustainable futures.

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COP 18 opens in Doha
27 November 2012

The 2012 UN Climate Change Conference has opened in Doha, Qatar. The meeting will include the 18th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 18) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 8th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 8). The Conference will run from 26 November-7 December 2012. Five subsidiary bodies will also convene: the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI), Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA), Ad Hoc Working Group on Annex I Parties' Further Commitments under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP), Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) and Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP). Key issues before CMP 8 are expected to include the adoption of amendments to the Kyoto Protocol for the second commitment period.

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Qatar prepares for COP18
21 November 2012

Qatar gears up to host the biggest event in 2012, the UN Climate Change Conference (COP18/CMP8), which will officially start next Monday and last up to December 7.

The General Coordinator for COP18/CMP8 and Chairman of its Executive Organizing Committee HE Abdulaziz bin Ahmed Al-Malki said that Doha has been actively preparing for the Conference for a year and the preparations are now in their final stages. A mass transport system for participants has been organised and thousands of volunteers have been briefed and are waiting to welcome the delegates and visitors arriving in Doha.

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Qatar National Convention Centre will use solar power to reduce COP18 carbon footprint
20 November 2012

Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC), one of the most environmentally-friendly large scale event venues of its kind in the world, is harnessing the solar energy to help power the crucial COP18/CMP8 climate talks.

The first of its kind in the region, the Centre’s design includes 3,500 sq metres of solar paneling which will provide up to 12.5 percent of the Centre’s energy needs across the complex each day during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP18/CMP8). The roof’s impressive solar energy system produces 1,225 MWh of electricity and offsets 1,140 tonnes of carbon emissions annually. This equates to an impressive 40.8 MWh of electricity produced during the 12 days of the COP18/CMP8 event.

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Christiana Figueres confident ahead of COP18
20 November 2012

UNFCCC executive secretary Christiana Figueres tells RTCC she’s confident that the forthcoming COP18 climate talks in Doha will be a success and see the adoption of a Kyoto Protocol second commitment period.

Figueres called on China’s new leader Xi Jinping to ensure the country remains committed to a low-carbon future and engaged in the next round of negotiations later this month.

Other topics of discussion include EU ambitions for COP18, the Kyoto Protocol extension, climate finance, future of the Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) and what ‘confidence building’ measures we can expect in the first week of the summit.

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Qatar aiming to meet climate change challenge
08 November 2012

In just a few short weeks, delegates from 194 nations, 7,000 representatives of non-governmental organisations, and more than 1,500 members of the global and regional media will arrive in Doha for the 2012 round of the UN Climate Change Conference – better known as COP18/CMP8. The 18th session of these meetings, which open on November 26 and end on December 7, marks the first time that they have been hosted in the Middle East and only the second time that the conference has been hosted by an Arab nation.

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UK minister hails upcoming COP18 in Qatar as ‘extremely significant’
08 November 2012

Greg Barker, the UK Minister of State for the Department of Energy and Climate Change Minister, has said that Qatar will have the perfect opportunity as host of COP18/CMP8 to demonstrate how Gulf nations will play a lead role in climate negotiations. 

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Qatar National Convention Centre prepares to host COP18
07 November 2012

With less than three weeks to go, the Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) has intensified its preparations to take centre stage and host Qatar's largest conference to date - the United Nations' Framework Convention on Climate Change 2012 (COP18/CMP8).

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Qatar will launch a Centre for Climate Research during COP18
05 November 2012

About 17,000 delegates, 7,000 NGOs and more than 1,500 journalists are expected to arrive in Doha for the the UN Climate Change conference, being held in the Middle East for the first time and Fahad bin Mohamed al-Attiya, chairman of the organising sub-committee for COP18/CMP8 Doha, has revealed that a Centre for Climate Research will be launched during the conference.

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President of COP18, Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, meets South Korean Environment Minister
05 November 2012

The Chairman of the Administrative Control and Transparency Authority and Chairman of the Climate Change Conference (COP18), His Excellency Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, met South Korean Environment Minister Jung-Suk Yu yesterday. Al-Attiyah also  participated in a reception hosted by South Korean environment ministry on the occasion of the first preparatory ministerial meeting of COP 18.  

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Qatar Sustainability Network will be focal point for Arab NGO’s during COP18
05 November 2012

The Qatar Sustainability Network (QSN) was officially launched in Doha yesterday and will be the focal point for Arab non-governmental organisations during COP18. QSN is a partnership between different entities from Qatar’s academic, private and public sectors which have joined efforts to advance the culture of research, science and sustainability. As a contribution to Qatar’s National Vision 2030 and the recently-launched Qatar National Research Strategy, QSN will promote collaborations among the research and academic community as well as the NGOs to become a leader in sustainable development and research.

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COP18 to start on November 26 in Doha, Qatar
01 November 2012

Qatar will become the first member of OPEC to host the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) this month and thousands of delegates will be in the capital Doha from 26 November to 7 December.

It will be the 18th year that nations gather for the Conference of the Parties and the meetings will focus on how to deal with environmental issues like pollution caused by countries’ industrial emissions.

The conference will officially run from Nov. 26 to Dec. 7, but pre-sessional meetings begin Nov. 20. At least 8,000 people will fly into Qatar to partake in these “technical” talks, which will take place at the Sheraton. By the time official talks actually begin, some 20,000 people will have gathered in Qatar for them.

Between Nov. 20 and Dec. 7, some 17,000 official delegates from 194 nations will be in town to attend the official summit at the Qatar National Convention Center. The world’s leading scientists, at least 1,500 journalists and thousands of NGO representatives are also expected.

Heads of state, government representatives and other high-level delegates will be in Doha from Dec. 4-7, when high-level talks will be held at the conference.

The United Nations only negotiates a handful of treaties outside of its New York headquarters, and climate change is one of them. Better known for having the world’s largest per capita carbon footprint than for its numerous green initiatives, Qatar is planning to use the conference and extra media attention to explain its ambitious environmental plans.

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Qatar Green Building Council launches green hotel initiative in preparation for COP18
26 September 2012

Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC) is encouraging the rapidly expanding hospitality sector to adopt best environmental practices in preparation for the coming United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties, also known as COP18, by launching its Green Hotel Interest Group (GHIG). The COP18/CMP8 UNFCCC Conference will take place in Doha from November 26th, and attract thousands of delegates from all over the world. The GHIG launch, which took place on Monday, 17 September at the Wyndham Grand Regency Hotel, Doha, saw leading hotels, organisations and individuals come together to create a forum that will support and advance greater sustainable practices within Qatar's hospitality sector.

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India to focus on technology adaptation
24 September 2012

India could focus on adaptation by developing innovative technologies as experts have claimed that mitigation alone will not be sufficient to combat climate change. Stressing the need to create adaptation programmes to deal with climate change, Environment Ministry Secretary T Chatterjee has said the country should encourage off-grid power generation systems especially by using biodiesel from slaughterhouse waste and palm oil waste. The inauguration of the 'India Carbon Market Conclave 2012' took place this month, organised by FICCI and Environment Ministry in partnership with the World Bank and the German Environment Ministry. The FICCI Knowledge Paper 'Climathon: From Durban to Doha'  has also been released to mark  the occasion. The knowledge paper summarises developments both in the global arena and within India in the realm of climate change.

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Bangkok meeting focuses on directing funds to developing nations for climate change adaptation
24 September 2012

Bangkok hosted an important meeting from August 31-Sept 5 when governments prepared for decisions that they will take at the next UN climate change conference in Doha. Three negotiating groups met informally in Bangkok; one focused on how to amend the Kyoto Protocol, the second prepared the work, which was started in 2007, to limit the average global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius, and the third mulled how to take the next steps necessary to negotiate the new global climate change agreement, which must be adopted by 2015 and enter into force from 2020. A common theme running through the Bangkok meeting was how to make sure that the promised amounts and adequate funds flow from developed to developing countries to support their plans to deal with climate change.

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China, India, South Africa and Brazil meet to define common position for COP18
24 September 2012

Representatives from China, India, South Africa and Brazil  are meeting in Brasilia to define a common position ahead of the United Nations’ climate change conference in Doha. The four countries form the bloc known as BASIC that acts jointly in international climate change meetings. One of the main topics being discussed in the meeting is the future of the 1997 emission- limiting Kyoto Protocol that requires industrialized countries to slash emissions.

 

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UN climate chief Christiana Figueres says Africa can drive COP18 adaptation agenda
20 September 2012

Africa should take control of negotiations revolving around climate change adaptation at the COP18 climate conference in Doha this November and December, according to UN climate chief Christiana Figueres.

Speaking at the 14th African Ministerial Conference on the Environment in Tanzania, Christiana Figueres said the new Adaptation Committee must also work harder to give the issue prominence at COP18.

The Least Developed Countries (LDCs) include 33 African nations and climate change impacts are already being felt.

 

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China draws attention to developing countries before climate negotiations in Doha
20 September 2012

China’s Vice-President Li Keqiang has called on COP18 hosts Qatar to take up the cause of developing nations at the forthcoming climate talks in Doha.

Li emphasised China’s determination that negotiations relating to the Bali Roadmap, which take place in a working group named ‘Long-Term Cooperative Action’ (LCA) are completed in a satisfactory fashion.

Speaking after a meeting with COP18 President Abdullah Bin Hamam Al-Attiyah in Beijing, Li told a Chinese news agency he was confident Qatar has empathy with this view.

 

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COP18 talks should focus on 2 degree goal according to EU negotiator
12 September 2012

United Nations’ climate talks should continue pushing for more ambitious action to ensure global warming is kept under 2 degrees, an EU climate negotiator said on Tuesday, a month after the United States was accused of backtracking on the goal.

Almost 200 nations agreed in 2010 to limit rising temperatures to below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 F) above pre-industrial times to avoid dangerous impacts from climate change like floods, droughts and rising sea levels.

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Storms, drought and flooding to feature prominently in Doha COP18 discussions
10 September 2012

Climate change negotiators faced warnings on Thursday that a string of extreme weather events around the globe show urgent action on emission cuts are needed as they opened new talks in Bangkok.

The week-long meeting in the Thai capital, which was devastated by major floods last year, aims to prepare the ground for a meeting of ministers under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Doha starting in November.

The meeting opens in the immediate aftermath of a deadly typhoon in the Republic of Korea and a hurricane that hit near New Orleans.

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President of COP18 attends Bangkok climate change conference
06 September 2012

His Excellency Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, President of the COP18 secretariat, participated in a meeting of the executive office of Bangkok Climate Change Conference ahead of COP18 at the UN Conference Centre (UNCC) in Thailand. Al-Attiyah welcomed the open-ended informal consultations on the “Parties” and the observers’ expectations about the 18th Climate Change Conference, and said as a new president of the conference, he is working alongside officials and the secretariat of the conference to ensure its success.

The 18th conference on climate change is an important moment in this process, Al-Attiyah said, adding that the decisions taken in Doha will pave the way for future proceedings.

 

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Global climate talks make headway before COP18
05 September 2012

It’s a long way from Bonn to Bangkok—literally and figuratively. It would be a great understatement to suggest that the June session of the UN climate talks in Bonn, Germany were acrimonious. In Bonn, governments spent the week arguing about procedural issues such as the nomination of chairs and the finalization of agendas. At the Bangkok negotiations that took place this past week, they argued over substance instead.

These arguments actually represent progress. Because the 50-plus issues under negotiation are contentious and have real impacts on national interests, they are deserving of robust debate. But we still have a long way to travel to get to Doha, Qatar, the location of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) COP 18 summit, which takes place this November.

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Bangkok climate change talks to close on 5 September
03 September 2012

The U.N. pre COP18 climate change talks will wrap up Sept. 5 in Bangkok. The talks, which began Aug. 30, are informal negotiations that will set the stage for the 18th Conference of the Parties (COP-18) to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change Nov. 26-Dec. 7 in Doha, Qatar.

Topping the agenda are finance options for the Green Climate Fund to help developing nations adapt to climate change and post-2012 emission reduction targets for countries participating in the Kyoto Protocol’s second commitment period. The first commitment period ends Dec. 31 of this year.

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Pre COP18 talks open in Bangkok
30 August 2012

The final session of informal preparatory talks for this years COP18 meetings opened in Bangkok this week and will run until 5 September. Negotiators expect the Durban platform to take centre stage and issues including greenhouse gas emissions reductions and the Kyoto Protocol will be central to the discussions.

Since the opening of the Bangkok talks around 50 of the world's poorest and most vulnerable countries have called on richer countries to set objectives for the reduction of emissions, and also to honour promises made in Copenhagen (2009), and since reiterated in Cancun (2010) and in Durban (2011) to provide financial help for developing countries to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change.

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Qatar’s role in climate change challenges
30 August 2012

The UN climate change process is geared up to create a global deal on emission reductions and later this year Qatar will host the COP18 climate change negotiations. The UNFCCC looks to create flows of capital, technology and education to solve the problems created by climate change and to reduce its impact. Qatar has serious ambition and is driving innovation to mitigate and adapt to climate change and environmental degradation.

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UNFCCC Loss and Damage programme to be discussed in Doha
29 August 2012

The UNFCCC work-programme on Loss and Damage will be discussed further at the next COP to be held in Doha, Qatar in December 2012. This is a very new concept that has emerged after the last conference of parties (COP17) of the UNFCCC held in Durban, South Africa in December 2011. It looks at the limits to adaptation and residual loss and damage after adaptation actions are taken.

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Thailand meeting a pre-cursor to COP18
28 August 2012

Delegates will gather for a week-long UN meeting in Thailand on Thursday to agree a work plan towards signing a 2015 pact that would force all nations to cut emissions of heat-trapping gases starting in 2020. The meeting is a pre-cursor to end-of-year COP18 talks to be held in Qatar, where the EU said it would adopt a second legal goal to cut emissions under the Kyoto Protocol starting in 2013, providing all nations have shown commitment to sign a new climate deal that will take effect after Kyoto 2 ends.

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Calls for political leadership at COP18
24 August 2012

A committee of MPs has echoed calls for the EU to set more ambitious carbon reduction targets, saying that the move would improve the chances of a new international climate agreement being reached in 2015.

The COP18 climate talks in Doha at the end of this year are expected to lay the foundations for a new binding international agreement in 2015, which would replace the Kyoto Protocol in 2020. Increasing planned CO2 cuts from 20 to 30 per cent by 2020 would bolster Europe's chances of securing a global agreement at the climate negotiations, MPs say.

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Sustainable development awards scheme launched in Qatar
22 August 2012

Qatar Petroleum has launched sustainable development awards for the country’s energy and industry sector.This is the first award scheme of its kind under the safety and sustainability theme, and it will coincide and support the upcoming 18th Conference of Parties (COP18) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Companies that submit their annual 2011 sustainability report to the HSE regulations and enforcement directorate will be eligible to participate in the awards scheme. The aim of the awards is to identify and reward companies that have demonstrated leadership, innovation and excellence in their sustainability performance, while encouraging the energy and industry sector to continually improve its reporting performance by recognising the best sustainability practices and reporting.

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Funding for Africa to be decided at COP18
20 August 2012

With the United Nations Climate Change Conference less than four months away, African countries need to present convincing arguments and successful adaptation projects to attract competitive funding for adjusting to changes in global weather patterns, climate finance experts say. The 18th Conference of Parties or COP 18 will take place in Doha, Qatar in late November. Progress on climate change talks will only be measured by how much pressure developing countries can exert on developed nations to agree on a binding outcome in Qatar.

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Gulf Cooperation Council to focus on renewable energy
17 August 2012

The Gulf Cooperation Council, have turned their focus towards the exploitation of renewable sources of energy present in the region. Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait and Oman have each declared their plans to produce at least 10% of electricity from renewable sources of energy by 2020 and are leaving no stone unturned to secure their future with renewable sources of energy.

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Namibia combats climate change
16 August 2012

Namibia, as one of the 20 African countries covered by the Japanese-funded Africa Adaptation Project (AAP),  is addressing and combating climate change.

Namibia is an active member of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and is now in the process of compiling it's fourth national communication to the UNFCCC and has a national policy on climate change in place.

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Sustainable Development Awards Scheme in Qatar to support COP18
16 August 2012

The HSE Regulations and Enforcement Directorate of Qatar Petroleum has announced today the launch of the Sustainable Development Awards Scheme for Excellence in Sustainability Reporting for Qatar's energy and industry sector.

This is the first award scheme of its kind under the safety and sustainability theme, and it will coincide and support the upcoming 18th Conference of Parties (COP18) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).


 

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UAE and Jordan to collaborate on renewables
16 August 2012

The UAE and Jordan have held talks over shared investment opportunities which the UAE’s Minister of Economy H.E. Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri has said will “provide a broad range of economic potentials of mutual interest.” The UAE is considering investments in Jordan’s water and renewable energy sectors, in addition to other development projects.

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Saudi Arabia’s solar powered future
15 August 2012

There have been major developments within the MENA region over the past 12 months, bringing solar energy to the fore. None more so than in Saudi Arabia where billion's of US dollars are being invested into the production of solar power to secure the nation's future energy. Qatar, Kuwait and Jordan among other states are also innovating and investing in solar power and the topic of renewable energy will feature prominently during the COP18 meetings in Doha, Qatar later this year. With recent growth in technical advancements in the market, it is plain to see why the Saudis will maximise this natural resource and optimise it as a possible source of future revenue. These developments will be discussed at the MENA Solar Power Forum in Abu Dhabi on 17 - 19 September 2012.

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Qatari projects highlight water issues
14 August 2012

Qatar's lastest high-tech gas plant highlights water as the main problem and the key stake in industrial processes in the Middle East. No matter how large the resources, without proper water management, countries are doomed both ways : either they simply can't exploit resources, or they will destroy their environment doing so. The COP18 meetings to be held in Doha later this year will address these issues, and concrete solutions are expected to be formulated.

Booming economies in the Middle East have many problems to tackle to achieve sustainable development. The most fundamental one is water management. The industrial capacity to manage water efficiently was proven paramount, when Shell and Veolia Water built a consortium designed to create the most advanced gas plant in Ras Laffan, Qatar, in 2003, for Qatar Petroleum.

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Qatar National Convention Centre earns LEED gold certification
13 August 2012

The US Green Building Council has awarded LEED Gold certification to the Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) under it's LEED for New Construction rating system. The project is the first of its kind to earn LEED certification, and is the first LEED-certified project on the Qatar Foundation (QF) campus. The Centre will provide the venue for the COP18 meetings later this year.

The project is the first of its kind to earn LEED certification, and is the first LEED-certified project on the Qatar Foundation (QF) campus.

The 107,535.26m2 QNCC Extension/Exhibition Hall comprises large exhibition spaces, conference spaces and offices, along with circulation, arrival concourse and back-of-house support areas.

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630,000 terrawatt hours of solar energy unused in MENA region
10 August 2012

Up to 630,000 terawatt hours of solar energy remain unused in the deserts of the MENA region, according to a recent report.

The “FM In the Middle East Market Intelligence Report 1 – 2011” released by forecast and analytics firm, ispy publishing, shows that alternative energy supply is an area whose benefits are under-utilised but one which will shape the selection process when appointing facilities managers in the future.

Reacting to the report, UAE-based FM firm Imdaad, has said that it thinks alternative energy sources are increasingly important for the growth of the MENA region’s facilities management sector.

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Qatar’s RasGas invests $50 million in emissions reduction and waste management
09 August 2012

The Managing Director of Qatar’s RasGas Company Hamad Rashid Al Mohannadi said that the company has invested some $50 million in projects that aim to reduce emissions and enhance waste management, Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported. RasGas’s Sustainability Report for 2011 was released on Tuesday and provides a comprehensive review of its environmental, social, economic and corporate performance for the year 2011 and comes at an appropriate time with the UNFCCC COP18 meetings taking place November to December 2012. 

RasGas has successfully launched several pace-setting emission reduction initiatives across its value chain, ranging from flare minimization to a new Greenhouse Gas Policy (GHG), the report added.

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Green growth required to meet 2015 climate deal
07 August 2012

According to an analysis piece by Reuters today, green economic growth is the key priority to reaching a new global 2015 climate deal. Rather than focussing on targets to lower greenhouse emissions, the emphasis should be placed on tackling climate change by creating the infrastructure to achieve sustainable economic growth.

Discussions last year at COP17 in Durban proved fruitful, where it was agreed to create a new global climate agreement by 2015. Since then the UNFCCC has met in Bonn and is due to meet again later this month in Bangkok to further the process. In addition to this the Green Climate Fund is also preparing for its inaugural board meeting this month. The emphasis will no doubt be on the climate change conference COP18 in Doha, Qatar, where the extension of the Kyoto Protocol will be high on the agenda.

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UK announces £100m fund for green investment
06 August 2012

Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, will today announce a boost for UK green investment at the Global Business Summit. The £100m fund will be managed by two Non-Domestic Energy Efficiency (NDEE) fund managers. These investments will pave the way for the UK Green Investment Bank, due to launch later this year.

He will set out how the renewable energy sector is delivering vital investment and jobs to the UK and reaffirms the Coalition's committment towards a clean, green, low carbon economy. He will say, "There is a global energy revolution underway. And the UK is not going to be left behind. We’re leading from the front. Together we find ourselves at the vanguard of one of the most dynamic, most innovative, most important industries of our time; an industry whose breakthroughs and endeavours will shape our societies for years to come; an industry that will help us build a more stable, more sustainable, more prosperous world."

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Green Climate Fund Board due to meet in August
03 August 2012

The Green Climate Fund, the  global institution  set up  to channel  support  to developing countries  to act  on climate change, is set to have its first Board Meeting in August 23-25 in Geneva. The Fund established last year at the UNFCCC COP17 meeting in Durban, South Africa, has the purpose of making a significant and ambitious contribution to the global efforts towards attaining the goals set by the international community to combat climate change. It has an objective of raising $100billion a year by 2020. 

At this significant meeting the 24-member Board will be considering organisational matters to operationalize the Fund. One key decision for the Board will be selection of the host country. Bids were submitted by six countries - Germany, Mexico, Namibia, Poland, Republic of Korea and Switzerlan - earlier in the year. The decision is due to be presented at the UNFCCC COP18 meeeting in Doha, Qatar - 26 November-7 December, 2012. 

For further details on the Green Climate Fund, please visit www.gcfund.net

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Climate change investor groups publish Global Investor Survey report
30 July 2012

According to the survey, the majority of investors have retained and boosted their commitment to addressing climate change despite the challenging economic environment; investors are making changes to their investment strategies based on climate risk assessments.

The Global Investor Survey on Climate Change, carried out by Mercer, details the results based on survey responses from asset owners and asset managers with collective assets totalling more than USD $12 trillion.

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Lack of carbon ambition raises concern
25 July 2012

The BASIC group has called on developed nations to up their level of ambition to tackle climate change. Ministers from the BASIC group, made up of Brazil, South Africa, India and China, reaffirmed in particular the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities". Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), this translates into developed-country parties being expected to take the lead in combating the adverse effects and development of climate change.

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Merkel Calls for New Kyoto Agreement
25 July 2012

German Chancellor, Angela Merkel met with international environment ministers at the Petersburg Climate Dialogue, Berlin and urged them to honour Kyoto agreements to reduce greenhouse gases and develop a road map for a follow-on treaty to present at the next United Nations climate conference.

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