The Qur’anic Botanic Garden (QBG), one of the first garden in the world to exhibit all plant species mentioned in the Holy Qur’an, Hadith, and Sunnah, celebrated the Year of Culture Qatar – USA 2021 with a tree-planting ceremony at QBG’s premises.
In the presence of Eng. Hassan Jumaa Bu Jamhour Al Mohannadi, Assistant Undersecretary for Environmental Affairs at the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, and as part of the event and QBG's Ghars campaign, which aims to plant 2,022 trees in the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup 2022™, Ms. Natalie Baker, Chargé d'Affaires, U.S. Embassy in Qatar, together with Ms. Fatima Al Khulaifi, Director, QBG, planted the campaign’s 2000th tree.
Ms. Natalie Baker said:
“At the U.S. Embassy in Doha sustainability is not simply an offshoot of our work; it is our work. We consistently look for new and innovative ways to prioritize sustainability efforts – everything from clean energy deployment, to supporting carbon neutrality and water conservation - we are committed to doing right by the environment. Our local eco-diplomacy initiatives here in Qatar align with the United States’ global mission to protect our planet for current and future generations and is our motivation for gathering here today with our Qatari partners and friends.”
“While we have made great strides in sustainability efforts, there is still much work to be done, and everyone has a part to play. Climate change is real, and it is a global issue requiring a global response. We look forward to working together with enthusiastic partners to confront ongoing climate emergencies. We are honored to be a part of the tree-planting ceremony today, and excited to see the long-term impacts of this initiative.”
Ms. Fatima Al-Khulaifi said:
“Since its establishment over a decade ago, QBG has enjoyed excellent ties with Doha’s diplomatic community and the country’s humanitarian and environmental stakeholders. Today’s event is a further testament to that. Over the years, we have hosted numerous tree-planting ceremonies and initiatives with embassies, including those of the UK, Switzerland, Turkey, India, and South Africa, as well as educational institutions and community organizations.
“Over the past 11 months, and as part of the Year of Culture Qatar – USA 2021, Qatar Foundation’s QBG has also hosted multiple engagements and events with prominent U.S. environmental stakeholders, such as the University of Arizona and the Missouri Botanical Garden, enhancing the environmental diplomacy between Qatar and the U.S. on both an entity-to-entity and people-to-people level.” she concluded.
On the sidelines of the event, which coincided with World Soil Day, the QBG also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) with a pledge to donate 2.5 million trees, which the latter’s volunteers will plant across Qatar over a 10-year period, as part of a wider initiative by the Arab Red Crescent and Red Cross Organization across the Arab world, in a bid to support Qatar’s green sustainable development. It is also in line with Qatar’s pledge to plant 10 million trees by 2030 under the Middle East Green Initiative.
The MoU outlines cooperation in the fields of environmental protection, food security, and charitable work in support of Qatar National Vision 2030. The agreement will pave the way for further collaborations between QBG and QRCS in the form of seminars, workshops, training courses, and study visits.
Mr. Ali bin Hassan Al-Hammadi, Secretary-General, QRCS, said: “One of the major challenges to humanitarian action is climate change and its impact on the environment, soil, and people. In light of Qatar's general policy to pay attention to this vital issue related to the future of humanity and protection of the Planet, QRCS takes as a top priority of its 2021-2024 strategy the integration of environmental and climate-related considerations in its humanitarian and development operations both in Qatar and beyond.
“It seeks to help vulnerable communities to have resilience to such impacts and concomitant natural disasters like flooding, droughts, heatwaves, desertification, wildfire, and soil salinization. At the same time, we work to raise awareness about the importance of environmental conservation and reduction of individual and institutional behaviors that lead to environmental degradation. With this spirit, the management of QBG and us concluded this agreement aimed at mitigating the impacts of climate change, as part of our mandates as humanitarian, social, and development organizations. We agreed to work together over the period 2022-2030 to plant some 2.5 million trees, within the parameters of QRCS’s humanitarian mission and legal capacity as auxiliary to the State of Qatar.”
Source and image credit: Press Release
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