UAE’s COP28 recognizes technology’s role in climate change

Advanced technology and space sectors to play crucial roles
UAE’s COP28 recognizes technology’s role in climate change
Technology and green finance among highlights at COP28

The UAE’s hosting of  COP28 will have technology sitting at the core of its agenda. Already, the UAE Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MoIAT), the UAE Space Agency, and COP28 have inked an agreement on technology-driven sustainable solutions ahead of the climate change conference.

COP28 will take place from November 30 to December 12, 2023, at the Dubai Expo City. It stands for the 28th session of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Tapping advanced technology and space sectors

According to Omar Al Suwaidi, the undersecretary of the UAE MoIAT, advanced technology and space sectors have a “huge role to play in climate action and must work closely together in the lead-up to COP28 to ensure strategic alignment.”

In the upcoming conference, Suwaidi revealed that “MoIAT will work with UAE Space Agency and COP28 to engage organizations in the advanced technology and space sectors to share their contributions towards climate solutions with other industries.”

This collaboration was formalized through a memorandum of understanding signed in July. Accordingly, MoIAT has already initiated cooperation through its Operation 300 bn strategy.

This plan aims to boost the industrial sector’s contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) from AED133 bn to AED300 bn by 2031. In partnership with Abu Dhabi’s EDGE Group, MoIAT wants to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics to drive GDP growth while fostering clean energy practices.

Read: What to expect at COP28 UAE

COP28’s key areas

In July, Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber outlined four areas of focus for UAE’s COP28 hosting. Dr. Al Jaber is COP28’s president-designate and the UAE’s special envoy for climate change.

First is fast-tracking the country’s transition to a sustainable energy-driven economy. As part of its ambitious roadmap, the UAE plans to triple the country’s renewable energy output to 11,000 gigawatts by 2030. Additionally, it targets to more than double its low carbon hydrogen production, reaching 180 mn tons per year, also by 2030.

The second is fixing climate finance. One proposed solution is to collaborate with international institutions to tap into the full potential of capital markets. These institutions include the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and the Global Financial Alliance for Net Zero.

Moreover, the UAE is urging donors to double adaptation financing by 2025. This effort is particularly focused on supporting vulnerable regions in the Global South. Just recently, the country has pledged a substantial $4.5 bn to finance climate projects in Africa.

The third focus area revolves around nature, people, lives, and livelihoods. This involves protecting vulnerable communities and investing in nature-based environment solutions like mangroves.

Lastly, Dr. Al Jaber emphasized inclusivity. In particular, he shared that the UAE is dedicated to creating the largest-ever youth climate delegate program. It aims to provide a platform for the youth where they can contribute to the global climate change movement.

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