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Suhail Al Mazrouei heads UAE delegation to World Water Forum in Indonesia

Suhail Al Mazrouei heads UAE delegation to World Water Forum in Indonesia
20 May 2024 18:01

BALI (WAM)

Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei, headed the UAE delegation to the 10th World Water Forum, held in Bali, Indonesia under the theme ‘Water for Shared Prosperity’.

Organised by the World Water Council and the Government of Indonesia, the Forum brought together 30,000 participants from 180 countries, including government officials and water experts, to collaborate and make long-term progress on global water challenges.

The high-level delegation included Dr. Amna bint Abdullah Al Dahak Al Shamsi, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, Abdulla Salem Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to the Republic of Indonesia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Non-resident UAE Ambassador to the Democratic Republic of East Timor, and top officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, and the Mohamed bin Zayed Water Initiative.

Al Mazrouei commented, “Sustainability of water resources has become a pressing issue for the world. Global water needs have increased sharply, in line with population and industrial growth. In addition to its importance as a basic human need, water plays a key role in food and energy security. Meanwhile, the availability of sustainable water supply is increasingly difficult due to environmental degradation and the impacts of climate change. We must work together to promote efficient and integrated management of water resources as part of our agenda.”

“In the UAE, water is one of the most important national priority issues, given our geographical location in an arid area, the scarcity of our natural water resources, and the high demand for water for development purposes. The UAE Water Security Strategy 2036 covers all elements of the water supply chain in the country and aims to ensure sustainable and continuous access to safe and adequate quantities of potable water, under normal operations and emergency situations," he added.

“We rely mainly on non-conventional sources to produce fresh water. To meet drinking, domestic, and industrial water requirements, urban water supplies is dependent on desalinated seawater. The UAE is one of the world’s largest seawater desalination producers. By 2036, more than 50 percent of our desalinated water will be produced by highly efficient and low carbon emission Reverse Osmosis technology,” he explained.

A United Nations (UN) report indicated that the UAE has achieved an average of 100 percent in providing safe drinking water and sanitation services, and 80 percent in integrated water resources management, which is one of the best results regionally.

"The UAE has adopted strategies and initiatives to improve water resources management, support strategic water reserves, and increase the area and efficiency of rainwater harvesting, with the aim of enhancing natural groundwater resources. In addition, we announced during COP28 the first hydrogeological map and geo-database of the UAE, a milestone achievement in documenting and managing water sources with the goal of sustaining and conserving water," Al Mazrouei said.

Underscoring the UAE's global water initiatives, he said, “To strengthen the global water security system, we launched the Mohamed bin Zayed Water Initiative that is committed to raising the importance of water scarcity on the global agenda, accelerating the development of transformative and sustainable solutions to water scarcity, and facilitating greater international cooperation to address this urgent challenge. As its first major initiative, the Mohamed bin Zayed Water Initiative has partnered with XPRIZE, with an investment of $150 million to launch the XPRIZE Water Scarcity competition, a five-year global competition that aims to encourage innovators around the world to focus on transforming the reliability, affordability, and sustainability of water desalination technologies.”

“We also launched the UAE Water Aid Foundation, or Suqia UAE, to provide safe drinking water to underprivileged communities. The beneficiaries of Suqia UAE’s projects, since its establishment in 2015, reached around 14.9 million people worldwide," he added.

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