Abu Dhabi: Environment Agency- Abu Dhabi (EAD) has started granting licenses to livestock owners and breeders to regulate grazing activities in an effort to protect natural rangelands and promote sustainable grazing practices. The licensing policy aims to ensure the recovery of vegetation cover, preserve biodiversity, and allow for the natural regeneration of rangelands for future generations.
The licenses are issued according to the executive regulations of Law No. (11) of 2020, which regulates grazing in Abu Dhabi. The law was issued by EAD under the guidance of Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of EAD and Ruler’s Representative in the Al Dhafra Region.
EAD is responsible for implementing the law, which aims to protect natural rangelands, coordinate with relevant authorities to manage protected areas and maintain a balance in critical natural habitats. The law also safeguards plants from overgrazing.
To get a grazing license, applicants must be UAE citizens, over 21 years old, and possess a valid animal log wealth certificate approved by the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA). Livestock owners and breeders can apply for a license by following the procedures and requirements set by EAD and paying the prescribed fees. They must provide copies of their identification cards, valid animal log wealth certificates, and Emirates ID copies of the individuals who will accompany and care for the livestock.
Licensees are permitted to graze their livestock in open wild areas but must maintain a minimum distance of 2KM from protected areas, forests, residential, military, petroleum, and private areas. Grazing unaccompanied is prohibited, and the license is valid for one grazing season only.
Licensees must adhere to environmental conditions, including not introducing foreign plants, animals, or harmful substances to grazing areas. They should not uproot, burn, transport, cut, destroy, log, remove, or collect plants in grazing areas. Damaging the biodiversity or local environment is also strictly prohibited.
Licensees must comply with permitted grazing seasons and follow EAD’s directives regarding the suspension of grazing to ensure the sustainability of grazing areas. The use of bicycles, vehicles, or any mechanism that negatively affects vegetation cover is not allowed, and transferring the license to another person is prohibited.
How to Apply?
Interested individuals can apply for a grazing license through EAD’s website by downloading the application form from the “Knowledge Hub” section. The completed form, along with the required documents, can be sent to Customerhappiness@ead.gov.ae. Upon successful application and payment of $ 68 (AED 250), applicants will receive an electronic copy of the grazing license via email.
EAD appreciates the cooperation of livestock owners in implementing the grazing law and its regulations. They play a crucial role in supporting the Abu Dhabi government’s efforts, as the law enhances EAD’s monitoring of rangeland resources and vegetation rehabilitation. By preserving traditional grazing practices, EAD aims to protect natural and cultural heritage, reduce soil degradation, and ensure long-term food security.