Dubai: Students at Zayed University (ZU) have launched a new Sustainability Club aimed at raising awareness on issues surrounding climate change and promoting the UAE’s target to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The club is seeking to promote knowledge and awareness on issues surrounding sustainability as well as an interdisciplinary approach to tackling issues related to climate change.
The club is led by Ms. Alia Abdulmajeed Hussain Abdulrahim Ahli, a second-year student at Zayed University’s College of Interdisciplinary Studies, and supported by the official club supervisor, Dr. Suzanna El Massah.
“This is a hugely important year for the UAE, and it is vital that the youth in this country engage in the COP 28 process. Our two visits to Cairo last year for COP 27 cemented in my mind the importance of a holistic and interdisciplinary approach to tackling issues around sustainability,” Ms. Alia remarked.
“This club enables us as ZU students to play our part, and we look forward to delivering a range of initiatives and a busy calendar of events in the build-up to the main event later this year,” the leader of the club added.
The event further included the announcement of the “Path to COP 28” initiative, which seeks to provide students with the knowledge and skills to act as student ambassadors at the COP 28 event to be held in the UAE later in 2023.
The club was formed after the students from Zayed University were selected to participate in a UN-sponsored COP 27 Simulation Model at the British University in Cairo.
Speakers from Carbon Middle East gave a presentation during the club’s first event, which examined sustainable packaging. This followed the UAE’s newly announced ban on single-use plastic shopping bags, which will take effect in 2024.
According to Dr. Suzanna El Massah, Zayed University’s Sustainability Programme Lead, the event shows the impact COP 28 can have in inspiring a generation of young Emiratis to tackle issues around sustainability and help deliver the ambitious agenda the UAE government has in this area.
“Clubs like this one give students both a voice and a platform to learn, and I am proud to support this student-led initiative,” Dr. Susanna observed.