RIYADH: The King Salman bin Abdulaziz Royal Reserve Development Authority obtained two accreditation certificates recently from the International Organization for Standardization.
The authority conformed to the ISO standards for Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems, or ISO-45001: 2018, and Environmental Management, or ISO 14001: 2015.
“The Authority has achieved the balance between the conservation of natural ecosystems and cultural heritage with the development of eco-friendly tourism, and enablement of sustainable employment of locals through balanced landscape management to meet the targets towards conservation, socio-economic development, and national tourism,” according to the ISO.
“This came through proper land-use planning guided by environmental ethics in dealing with natural resources, and (they) act as stewards of the Arabian desert ecosystems and dedicate efforts towards socially and economically empowering communities and youth,” the organization stated.
Fahad Al-Shuwaier, director-general of communication at the authority, said the ISO accreditation was the benchmark for occupational safety and environmental management.
“The safe work environment creates a complete and consistent business model that aims to achieve the aspirations of stakeholders and visitors to the natural areas. It works to raise work efficiency, which ensures the achievement of sustainable development,” he told Arab News.
“Creating a safe work environment in accordance with the highest international standards and legislation contributes significantly to increasing the Authority’s focus on achieving its strategic objectives and raises the efficiency and quality of achieving the desired goals,” Al-Shuwaier said.
Earlier this month, the authority was announced as a government member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature or IUCN. This was in recognition of its efforts to empower local communities in nature conservation and wildlife protection, and the restoration of key flora and fauna throughout the country.
It is one of the first entities in the Kingdom to obtain IUCN membership, allowing it to draw on international wildlife databases, and the expertise of 18,000 specialists linked to the world body.
The reserve is the largest natural protected area in Saudi Arabia. It covers 130,000 square kilometers and is known for the diversity of its landscapes, and has about 300 species of animals.