Saudi Arabia uses Stockholm+50 conference as showcase for its efforts to protect the environment

Saudi Arabia uses Stockholm+50 conference as showcase for its efforts to protect the environment
Representatives of Saudi Arabia participate in the two-day Stockholm+50 conference in the Swedish capital. (Twitter: @MEWA_KSA)
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Updated 04 June 2022

Saudi Arabia uses Stockholm+50 conference as showcase for its efforts to protect the environment

Saudi Arabia uses Stockholm+50 conference as showcase for its efforts to protect the environment
  • The two-day international meeting was convened by the UN General Assembly in the Swedish capital 50 years after an early environmental gathering in the Swedish capital
  • The Kingdom’s delegation highlighted the roles of the Saudi Green and Middle East Green initiatives in working to achieve sustainable development and confront the challenges of climate change

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia on Friday highlighted the local and global efforts it is making to protect and preserve the environment, including numerous programs and initiatives designed to achieve its national environment strategy.

It came during the two-day Stockholm+50 conference, at which the Kingdom’s delegation was headed by Abdulrahman Al-Fadhli, the minister of environment, water and agriculture, and Ali Al-Ghamdi, the CEO of the National Center for Environmental Compliance.

Saudi authorities said that their initiatives are also designed to help achieve the objectives of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and confront the challenges of climate change, as they stressed the importance of international cooperation in taking the necessary action to secure a better future.

The conference, which began on Thursday, was an international meeting convened by the UN General Assembly in the Swedish capital under the slogan A Healthy Planet for the Prosperity of All — Our Responsibility, Our Opportunity. It took place 50 years after an early environmental gathering in the Swedish capital.

Speaking during the conference, Al-Ghamdi affirmed the Kingdom’s desire to make every effort to achieve the objectives of the country’s national strategy for the environment and its protection. He highlighted the roles of the Saudi Green and Middle East Green initiatives in working to achieve sustainable development and confront the challenges of climate change.

He said the Kingdom believes in the need to guarantee human progress and prosperity, the safety of the planet, and the role of the international community. He also noted that the Kingdom’s ambitious Vision 2030 development and diversification agenda is working to protect, enhance and sustain the country’s natural environment by adopting a holistic view of its ecosystems.

The national environment program was launched to raise the level of environmental commitment in all developmental sectors, reduce pollution and its negative effects on the environment, develop natural vegetative cover, combat desertification, protect wildlife, preserve biodiversity, and transform the waste sector from a linear economy to a circular economy, Al-Ghamdi added.

This is being done by enhancing the participation of the private sector by encouraging improvements to services and stimulating innovation, as well as by raising environmental awareness among the public and strengthening the role of the non-profit sector, he said.

Al-Ghamdi highlighted to the important leadership role of the Kingdom through its presidency of the G20 in 2020, and the statement made by the group’s leaders during the their annual meeting hosted by Riyadh that year, in which they agreed to the aim of voluntarily reducing global land degradation by 50 percent by 2040. To this end they launched a global initiative to enhance the protection of wild habitats, restore land and prevent its deterioration, along with a global initiative to preserve coral reefs. He added that his country is cooperating with the other G20 member states to implement the two initiatives.

In addition, Saudi Arabia has raised the level of its national contribution to climate action by pledging to reduce emissions by 278 million tons annually by 2030, he added, which is more than double the amount previously announced in 2015.

Saudi authorities have launched many initiatives, Al-Ghamdi said, including plans for half of the Kingdom’s domestic energy needs to be provided by renewable energy sources, and to take advantage of carbon capture and storage technologies.

The Kingdom has also announced the target of reaching carbon neutrality by 2060 through a circular carbon economy approach, and joined the Global Methane Pledge, which aims to reduce global methane emissions by 30 percent compared with 2020 levels.


Where We Are Going Today: Plant Cafe in Saudi Arabia’s Abu Arish

Where We Are Going Today: Plant Cafe in Saudi Arabia’s Abu Arish
Updated 12 August 2022

Where We Are Going Today: Plant Cafe in Saudi Arabia’s Abu Arish

Where We Are Going Today: Plant Cafe in Saudi Arabia’s Abu Arish
  • Plant Cafe opened its doors to Jazan residents seven months ago

The sleepy southwestern city of Abu Arish in Jazan province is known for producing and exporting salt and, more recently, for a cafe that combines the perfect blend of salty and sweet.

Seven months ago, Plant Cafe opened its doors to residents of the area, and Jazan city should take notice.

One recent evening, Plant Cafe was full of coffee enthusiasts, sipping cold drinks on the velvety green chairs and scrolling their phones at the terrazzo-patterned tables.

With strategically-placed full-length mirrors spread along the pathway to the seating areas, the photogenic cafe offers a variety of spots for the perfect mirror selfie.

In the back, colorful portraits of famous figures are hung on a wall. The wooden spiral stairs— with green plants draped along them — lead to the second floor seating area.

Limited seating is also available outdoors for those who dare to sit and sip in the searing heat.

With the sound of the steaming espresso machine and soft music piped into the space, the cute coffee cups illustrated with farmers gathering flowers and plants are always being filled.

The must-try items include the cold lemon strawberry trifle in a jar. With bits of rich cheesecake, a drizzling of tart strawberry sauce, smooth cream and a bit of fresh lemon on top, it is layered decadence to be enjoyed with a spoon, and conveniently offered in a sealed portable jar — the perfect portion for a late-night sweet tooth craving or afternoon pick-me-up.

The cafe opens bright and early until late night six days of the week, from 6 a.m. until 2 a.m. On Fridays, it is open from 4:30 p.m. to 2 a.m.


Expat arrested in Saudi Arabia for assaulting child with disabilities

Expat arrested in Saudi Arabia for assaulting child with disabilities
Updated 12 August 2022

Expat arrested in Saudi Arabia for assaulting child with disabilities

Expat arrested in Saudi Arabia for assaulting child with disabilities
  • An investigation into the assault has been launched and the Public Prosecution will be taking the necessary legal measures against him, an official source confirms

RIYADH: Saudi authorities arrested an expat for assaulting a child with disabilities after video footage of the incident was circulated online, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Thursday. 

Saudi Arabia’s Attorney General Sheikh Saud bin Abdullah Al-Mujeb issued an arrest warrant for the Egyptian resident who was seen beating a child on CCTV footage in a neighborhood in the town Wadi ad-Dawasir in Najd. 

An investigation into the assault has been launched and the Public Prosecution will be taking the necessary legal measures against him, an official source confirmed to SPA. 

The Kingdom’s penal code protects children from abuse, the source said, adding that the victim would be receiving counseling in line with the child protection law.


Man arrested for carrying 54 kg of khat in Saudi Arabia

Man arrested for carrying 54 kg of khat in Saudi Arabia
Updated 12 August 2022

Man arrested for carrying 54 kg of khat in Saudi Arabia

Man arrested for carrying 54 kg of khat in Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: Security forces in Saudi Arabia have arrested a man carrying 54 kg of the stimulant khat, state news agency (SPA) reported.

The narcotics were found in the accused’s vehicle as he drove in Jazan region.

He has been referred to relevant authorities for further action, the SPA statement said.

The arrest comes as the country cracks down on the smuggling and use of illegal and controlled substances.

Earlier this week, Saudi authorities arrested 70 people for trying to smuggle about 70 tons of khat and 618 kg of hashish into the Kingdom.


Beit Hail in Saudi Arabia’s north showcases local heritage

Beit Hail in Saudi Arabia’s north showcases local heritage
Updated 12 August 2022

Beit Hail in Saudi Arabia’s north showcases local heritage

Beit Hail in Saudi Arabia’s north showcases local heritage
  • Ancient Thamudic and Sadu embroidery on display

HAIL: The Beit Hail 15-day festival was launched on Wednesday showcasing local heritage including incense burners, daggers, wicker baskets, and clothes with ancient Thamudic and Sadu embroidery.

Dep. Gov. of Hail Prince Faisal bin Fahd inaugurated the event at Aja Park with the undersecretary of the region, Adel bin Saleh Al-Sheikh, and other officials.

Prince Faisal toured the site and visited the exhibition of the late artist Youssef Al-Shagdali.

The festival also features classic cars and popular, colorful handicrafts created by the region’s artisans.

There were also stalls that showed how cloth is woven and transformed into clothing.

Visitors were entertained by a folklore troupe performing the Saudi Arda.

The event aims to support local talent and boost small businesses.

 

 


The Line city impresses Makkah governor, plans to book first 

The Line city impresses Makkah governor, plans to book first 
Updated 12 August 2022

The Line city impresses Makkah governor, plans to book first 

The Line city impresses Makkah governor, plans to book first 
  • Prince Khaled Al-Faisal visited the design expo at Jeddah Superdome
  • He was briefed on innovations to alleviate environmental challenges

JEDDAH: The architecture of the futuristic city, The Line, has impressed Makkah Gov. Prince Khalid Al-Faisal, who says he will be the first to book an accommodation once it is complete.

Prince Khalid made the remarks in a tweet following his visit to the NEOM exhibition to see the designs on Wednesday at the Jeddah Superdome.

The governor toured the exhibition that showcases the architectural innovations of the city.

He was also briefed on how the city would help alleviate the critical environmental challenges facing humanity.

Last month, The Line’s designs were revealed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

They showed the most important features of The Line, which is 200 meters wide, 170 kilometers long, and 500 meters high. It will eventually house 9 million people and have a 34 square kilometer footprint.

It will take up less land than other cities of comparable capacity and help to conserve 95 percent of NEOM’s land.

The Line imagines a future without streets, cars or emissions. It will be powered entirely by renewable energy and prioritize health and well-being over transportation and infrastructure.

The exhibition showcases all these aspects of the city. It opened on Aug. 1 and will be taken to other locations from Aug. 14, including Riyadh and the Eastern Province.

It offers 50 guided tours a day in Arabic and English.