Pakistan air chief receives prestigious medal from Kingdom

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Updated 13 March 2018
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Pakistan air chief receives prestigious medal from Kingdom

RIYADH: Marshal Sohail Aman, the Pakistani air chief, has been given the prestigious King Abdul Aziz Medal of Excellence by the Chief of General Staff (Royal Saudi Armed Forces), Gen. Abdul Rahman bin Saleh Al-Bunyan.
The air chief received the award during his visit to the Kingdom, where he met Gen. Abdul Rahman in his office.
The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) said in a press statement Friday that the medal had been awarded to the air chief in recognition of support provided by the PAF to the Royal Saudi Air Force in various domains.
During the meeting with Gen. Abdul Rahman, the air chief highlighted the PAF’s key role in counterterrorism operations in Pakistan.
The statement added that the Saudi Chief of General Staff lauded the PAF’s role in the success of operation Zarb-e-Azb, a major offensive that Pakistani armed forces launched on June 15, 2014.
The Pakistani Air Chief also met Major General Mohammed bin Saleh Al Otaibi, Commander of the Royal Saudi Air Force, at its operations center in Riyadh.
“The Air Chief expressed satisfaction on the unremitting mutual cooperation between the two air forces and offered assistance to his counterpart in the fields of military and aviation training,” said the statement.
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia enjoy deep-rooted defense ties.
Earlier this week joint exercises of their naval forces began in the Arabian Sea near the port city of Karachi.
“The joint exercise is a regular feature of our defense cooperation with the Kingdom, to share expertise and exchange knowledge between the two naval forces,” Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal said on Friday during a weekly news briefing.


Clean sweep: Marine waste targeted in Red Sea tourism program

The program for eliminating marine debris will play an important material and moral role with the support of the residents of areas surrounding the seafront. (SPA)
Updated 51 min 49 sec ago

Clean sweep: Marine waste targeted in Red Sea tourism program

  • Debris major cause of death for marine life
  • Disintegration of plastic waste threaten human food resources

JEDDAH: A beach cleanup program targeting marine waste has been launched by the Red Sea Development Co. (TRSDC), the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The firm, which is behind the development of a luxury seafront tourism destination in Saudi Arabia, is already developing a range of environment-friendly policies such as zero-waste-to-landfill, zero-discharge-to-the-sea, zero-single-use plastics, and achieving 100 percent carbon neutrality. On Saturday it launched the Marine Debris Beach Clean Up Program as part of the Red Sea Project. “Eliminating marine debris is receiving increasing attention from the media that it has become a global cause, urging us to participate in protecting our virgin environment for which our seafront is known,” said TRSDC CEO John Pagano.
“The program for eliminating marine debris will play an important material and moral role with the support of the residents of areas surrounding the seafront. It will also shed light on the importance of reducing the use of nonrecyclable plastics, in addition to encouraging the disposing of these substances in a safe and sustainable manner.”
The TRSDC will continue to explore ways for recycled materials to be a source of employment opportunities for the area’s residents, he added. 
TRSDC is an official partner of the United Nations’ initiative to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the cleanup program will initially support two SDGs: Life Below Water and Life on Land. It will expand to support other SDGs, including Responsible Consumption and Production, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Decent Work and the Growth of the Economy, Ending Poverty, and Quality Education.

HIGHLIGHTS

• TRSDC is an official partner of the United Nations’ initiative to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the cleanup program will initially support two SDGs: Life Below Water and Life on Land.

• It will expand to support other SDGs, including Responsible Consumption and Production, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Decent Work and the Growth of the Economy, Ending Poverty, and Quality Education.

• Institutions or individuals wishing to take part in the beach cleanup program can find more details here: www.act4sdgs.org/partner/TheRedSeaProject

Dr. Rusty Brainard, chief environment officer at TRSDC, said: “Marine debris causes significant damage to the environment and is a major cause of death for many marine organism species, which may ingest these substances. Moreover, the disintegration of plastic waste into small pieces that penetrate into the food web base may also threaten human food resources. Our program for eliminating marine litter is a long-term project that includes ongoing monitoring of environmental health, as well as periodic intervention to clean up any waste in the Red Sea Project.”
TRSDC has teamed up with leading academic institutions in the Kingdom, such as King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and the University of Tabuk, on a number of educational initiatives, added Brainard.
The partnership between TRSDC and KAUST has led to an international competition — “Brains for Brine” — that encourages academics, scientists, engineers and the water industry to find solutions for managing the disposal of brine, which is a waste product of water desalination, in a sustainable and commercially viable way.
KAUST has also helped TRSDC with marine spatial planning for the Red Sea Project.
As part of the planning process, major environmental studies were carried out to ensure that the area’s sensitive ecology was protected both during and after completion of the development.
The final master plan, which preserves around 75 percent of the destination’s islands for conservation and designates nine islands as sites of significant ecological value, required several redesigns to avoid potential disruption to endangered species native to the area.
Institutions or individuals wishing to take part in the beach clean-up program can find more details here: www.act4sdgs.org/partner/TheRedSeaProject