HE the Minister of Environment Abdullah bin Mubarak bin Aaboud al-Midhadhi inaugurated ecoQ, accompanied by Sheikh Hassan bin Mohamed bin Ali al-Thani, honorary chairman, ecoQ advisory committee, Dr Saif al-Hajari, chairman of the ecoQ advisory committee, Qatar Foundation vice-chairperson and CEO of the Friends of Environment Centre, as well as a number of senior government officials, ambassadors, and representatives from international organisations.
Ahmed al-Sada, director of Evaluation of Environmental Impacts Department of the Ministry Of Environment, gave the opening speech at the conference, saying: “Human social, economic and environmental development are the pillars of sustainable development, which march steadily towards achieving equilibrium between the need for environmental growth and social growth.”
Al-Sada explained that “the purpose behind organising this conference is to try and present a clear picture from current environmental issues including climate change and renewable energy, in addition to the most significant initiatives to take urgent procedures to maintain natural resources to achieve sustainable development.
“Qatar, headed by HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani and HH the Heir Apparent Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, is giving an increasing interest to the environment out of the belief that protecting the environment and preserving its natural resources will achieve optimum safety levels and a quality lifestyle on planet Earth. This is aligned with the Ministry of Environment in its vision, strategy plans and different environmental programmes which all aim to achieve Qatar’s National Strategy 2030.”
Naser al-Noaimi of Qatar Green Centre, highlighted the importance of developing new technology to design, maintain and renovate buildings in an environmentally sustainable way that also promotes social and cultural values. He also presented Qatar’s Sustainability Assessment System (QSAS) standards for environmentally-sound construction to the international audience.
Jean Audouze, national president, France – Unesco, presented the delegates with the ultimate truths that bring environmental technology to the forefront of modern day research and design initiatives. He said that at the beginning of 19th century, the planet had only 1bn human inhabitants. It is estimated that by next month there will be 7bn people on Earth, and by 2050 there will be 9bn.
“If every human being wished to live with the standards of American people, we would need seven Earths to support this amount of people. If every human being wanted to live in the same standards of a European, we would need three Earths to support all those people,” said Audouze.
He explained that the amount of CO2 in our atmosphere has seen an exponential increase instead of a proportional increase in the last century, resulting in abnormally high temperatures. The main sources of CO2 are transport, agriculture and industry, with transport being the most significant source.
Audouze said that the world has used as much petrol between 1980 and 2000 as it did between 1860 and 1980, with rich countries, comprising 20% of the world’s population, using 80% of the energy.
He warned that the future of petrol and natural gas is short, with significant decreases in production relative to demand expected in the next 50 years.
Currently, the world’s energy supply is 34% petrol, 23% coal, 23% natural gas, 5% nuclear power and 12% renewable, but Audouze hopes that in the coming years technological developments will allow us to fully harness geothermal energy and nuclear fusion processes.
Yesterday’s session saw speakers discuss the financing of green projects, nano technology, the mission of Qatar Energy and Environment Research Institute and environmental law. Today will include sessions led by the Ministry of Environment, the German Renewable Energy Agency and the Arab Renewable Energy Commission.
ecoQ is officially supported by the Ministry of Environment, Qatar Chamber of Commerce & Industry, the German Delegation for Trade & Commerce (AHK), Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI), Friends of the Environment Centre, Qatar and the French National Commission (Unesco), Berlin Government, Oxford Business Group and Qatar University Research Centre, Berlin Government, Unesco Regional Office in Doha and Qatar University – Environment Research Centre.
Key sponsors of ecoQ this year include: Qatar Petroleum (Energy Partner), Qatar Foundation – Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (Research Partner), UDC (Golden Sponsor), Qatar Cool (Golden Sponsor), Hasad (Silver Sponsor), Al-Khaliji Bank (Silver Sponsor), HSBC (Business Lunch Sponsor), G4S Security (Security Partner), Airlink (Logistic Partner) and Movenpick Hotel (Official Hotel).
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