The Emirates Environmental Group (EEG) joined the global celebrations of the “World Day To Combat Desertification and Drought” on the 17th of July by launching its popular paper recycling project “Recycle. Reforest. Repeat”. For the third consecutive year, EEG rolls out the project to engage the different sectors of the society in recycling practices and encourage them to take action towards combating desertification. Sharing the achievements of the project, Mrs. Habiba Al Mar’ashi, Chairperson of the Emirates Environmental Group said, “The project witnessed a significant increase in collections from the previous year, receiving 48,526 kg of paper for recycling in 2017 and 127,763 kg of paper in 2018. The incredible growth of the programme by 163% demonstrated the effectiveness of environmental awareness campaigns in the country and the growing adoption of responsible and sustainable practices by the UAE community.”
The recycling of the collected paper resulted in the mitigation of 494 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions and saved 840 MWh of energy, 403 m3 of landfill space and 2,172 trees from being felled. Moreover, the project acted as an effective means to educate people on the need to rethink, reduce, reuse and recycle.
The slogan of the World Day to Combat Desertification 2018, “Land has true value – Invest in it”, focused on sustainable land management as a way to regenerate economies, create jobs and revitalise communities. The celebration called for all involved – producers, consumers and policymakers – to make a difference by investing in the future of the land. As an accredited organisation to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNNCD), EEG has joined hands with UNCCD in its efforts to promote this valuable message.
The project “Recycle. Reforest. Repeat” was rolled out between the 18th of June and the 18th of July 2018, witnessing an active participation of 157 students, 26 schools and 33 government and private sector entities in all of the seven Emirates. The objective of the project was to raise awareness on the need to preserve the environment by engaging in a constructive activity with a target to accomplish. The target of paper collections was 750 kg of paper for corporate and academic entities and 350 kg of paper for families.
The project served as an opportunity for UAE-based entities to increase their visibility and contribute to sustainable waste management practices during the summer months. It strategically targeted paper collections as the recycling of paper allows for sustainability through minimising carbon dioxide emissions and the number of trees that are being cut down and hence reducing the pressure on natural resources and tackling climate change.
During the one-month period, the participants effectively backed the global contributions to the Sustainable Development Goal 15, which calls to protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation. EEG will award the champions of the project on the 15th of September during a meaningful closing ceremony in the venue kindly provided by the Grand Millennium Hotel, Dubai.
The EEG Chairperson, Mrs. Habiba Al Marashi will address the champions of this project for their diligence and efforts and award them with certificates of participation and with saplings of an indigenous tree to be planted in their name, under EEG’s “For Our Emirates We Plant” tree planting ceremony in the month of December. A total of 195 trees will be planted as the result of the project, contributing to EEG’s set target of planting 1,000 trees in 2018.
EEG salutes the environmental doers and calls upon the society at large to make such recycling practices a regular consistent feature all year round, advocating the importance of inclusive cooperation to restore and rehabilitate degraded land and contribute towards achieving the overall Sustainable Development Goals.