UAE’s Sustainability Leadership Strengthened by DSCE, DEWA, and WGEO’s Active Engagement in Previous COPs

person holding a green plant
Representational image. Credit: Canva

Representatives from the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE), Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), and the World Green Economy Organization (WGEO) have actively participated in previous United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conferences of the Parties (COPs). Their engagement has been instrumental in strengthening the UAE’s collaboration with the global community in addressing climate change and advancing the country’s remarkable progress in climate action and environmental preservation.


The UAE delegation played a proactive and influential role in the previous COPs, particularly in COP21, considered a pivotal event in the global climate agenda. The UAE actively contributed to the successful negotiation and implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement, which aimed to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The delegation actively participated in various sessions, meetings, and site visits to key projects hosted by the respective countries. They facilitated the exchange of best practices and experiences, fostering collaboration to achieve shared climate objectives. Moreover, the delegation spearheaded groundbreaking initiatives that promote environmental sustainability worldwide. They highlighted the UAE and Dubai as exemplary models for sustainability, showcasing their remarkable achievements in accelerating the transition to a green economy and achieving Net-Zero goals.

Over the past years, COP has provided a global platform to highlight the significant progress and developments we have made in our journey towards achieving sustainable social and economic growth and supporting the UAE’s strategy to achieve economic growth while protecting the environment and future generations. Selecting the UAE to host COP28 by the UNFCCC in Dubai Expo City this November, underlines the world’s confidence in our wise leadership, and the country’s shining record in climate action over the years. These efforts were crowned with the announcement of the strategic initiative to achieve Net-Zero by 2050, in 2021, becoming the first country in the Middle East and North Africa to launch this strategic initiative. We are intensifying our efforts this year to implement the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to make COP28 a success and support this ambitious national project to lead the global transformation to implement concrete actions. This also enables all stakeholders to work across the main pillars of achieving the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement. COP28 is of particular significance as it marks the conclusion of the first Global Stocktake, a comprehensive assessment of the progress made in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of the DSCE, MD & CEO of DEWA, Chairman of the WGEO.


Al Tayer highlighted that the UAE Cabinet, Chaired by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, approved the UAE to join the Global Alliance for Green Economy, shows the UAE’s pioneering role in climate action and the wise leadership’s commitment to promoting international cooperation and mobilisation of efforts to accelerate the transformation towards a green economy. The UAE’s model is the most efficient model in ensuring sustainable development and facing the repercussions of climate change, and consolidating the concept of sustainable living by achieving a balance between economic growth, social welfare and environmental protection. Transformation towards a green economy requires strong partnerships between all stakeholders at the global level. It also requires following a new approach and more efficient work mechanisms. The success of these efforts needs aligning and linking climate planning and financing on the one hand and achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030 on the other.

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“The UAE offers an effective model for a green economy that can achieve economic sustainability and protect the environment. The Global Alliance for Green Economy will contribute to achieving a new qualitative leap in the process of applying the green economy model on a global scale. This is through mobilising the efforts of countries to achieve the goals of the green economy as a high-priority goal, to enable climate action and sustainable development. Moreover, it contributes to strengthening the capabilities of developing countries and supports their projects for the transition towards a green economy, in addition to the exchange of knowledge and best practices. The global alliance will also pave the way for further cooperation and will constitute an important step towards joint action to achieve the desired climate goals to build a brighter and more sustainable future for us and for generations to come. It will further create the ideal environment to host the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 28) in the UAE,” continued Al Tayer.


The UAE Government, represented by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE), the World Green Economy Organization (WGEO), and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), in collaboration with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), hosted the Middle East and North Africa Climate Week (MENA Climate Week) in 2022 in Dubai. The first-ever MENA Climate Week achieved remarkable success and gained widespread praise from prominent institutions and figures concerned with climate action around the world.

The event attracted over 15,000 participants from 40 countries around the world who attended in person and virtually. It also attracted 500 global speakers and experts, including ministers and officials from the government and private sectors, and climate champions, in addition to officials from UN climate organisations. MENA Climate Week featured over 200-panel discussions, workshops and ministerial roundtable sessions. The Week’s activities focused on three tracks; the first was ‘Raising Ambition: National actions and economy-wide approaches.’ The second was ‘Tradition meets Modernity: Integrated Approached for Climate Resilience.’ The third track was ‘Accelerating Implementation in this Critical Decade.’

At the opening ceremony, HE Al Tayer said that the event will constitute a milestone in the global climate action agenda and marks a key moment for the region as we take up a leadership role in this global agenda with the next two critical Climate Conferences being hosted in the region. Al Tayer explained that MENA Climate Week comes at the close of a key year in climate action and the start of a critical decade. It is the first meeting on the global climate agenda after COP26 which was organised in Glasgow in November of last year and follows a series of climate weeks that were held in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Asia and the Pacific in 2021.

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Last year, a high-level delegation from the DSCE, DEWA, and the WGEO participated in COP27, which was held in November 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

Al Tayer delivered a speech during a session hosted by the UN Global Compact Networks in the UAE and Egypt, titled ‘Accelerating Net-Zero Commitments’ that featured a series of multistakeholder dialogues addressing Egypt and the UAE’s climate agendas. Al Tayer highlighted the ongoing efforts to advance effective measures and discussions on climate action, touching on the most important outcomes and expected results of COPs, and the contribution of the 2022 edition to accelerate climate action and enhance the participation of the private sector in emissions reduction.

In a session co-hosted by UNFCCC – WGEO and HSBC Middle East, titled ‘The Role of Green Economy in Nature-based Solutions,’ Al Tayer delivered a keynote speech that highlighted WGEO’s efforts in promoting practical discussions on nature-based solutions and their impact on climate action during an engagement with stakeholders.

Al Tayer also delivered a keynote speech in a session about the youth and their contributions to society, which was co-hosted by WGEO and HSBC. He focused on WGEO’s role in engaging young people as part of its efforts to advance sustainable solutions, combat climate challenges, and develop the skills and knowledge of the youth.

The WGEO signed an agreement with HSBC Bank to enhance the involvement of youth, and other stakeholders in various areas of climate action. This was part of its commitment to raising awareness about climate change and the importance of engaging youth and adopting strategies aimed at reducing the consequences of climate change.


During COP25 in Madrid, Spain, WGEO, in cooperation with the UNFCCC, held a high-level forum to discuss financing strategies for activities targeted to combat climate change and implement the nationally determined contributions, as well as review the measures and actions undertaken by countries to achieve the Paris Agreement.

The forum, which was attended by several ministers, officials and representatives from various countries, was a pioneering platform that highlighted the most important practices and effective ways to develop and implement regional and national strategies. It also facilitated access to financing for countries to meet their nationally determined contributions to mitigate the effects of climate change and achieve long-term strategies for developing countries.

As part of the Regional Climate Weeks event held on the sidelines of the conference, Al Tayer announced that the UNFCCC had chosen Dubai to host the MENA Climate Week 2020, the first of its kind in the region and was held in conjunction with the Expo 2020 Dubai.

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At COP24 which was held in Katowice, Poland, Al Tayer delivered a keynote speech during the Sustainable Innovation Forum. Al Tayer also launched the Global State of Green Economy Report 2018, which was WGEO’s first global publication. The report titled “Inspirational Innovations in Business, Finance and Policies”, was prepared in cooperation with the University of Cambridge and UNDP. It focused on the importance of innovation and sustainability in promoting the green transition around the world.

During a special seminar on WGEO, held at the GCC pavilion, Al Tayer talked about establishing the organisation and its first preparatory conference. Al Tayer also met with leaders and officials in sustainability and green economy.


During COP22, which was held in Marrakesh, Morocco, a delegation from DSCE and DEWA, shed light on the efforts of the energy sector in Dubai, which was a pioneer in adopting global trends for green economy and sustainability, and reducing the effects of climate change. The conference witnessed the global launch of WGEO and the UAE’s joining of WGEO as the first member.

During a youth circle organised by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment as part of the conference, DEWA highlighted its experience in encouraging and preparing young Emiratis as well as adopting positive and innovative ideas to address global climate change issues.


During COP21 in Paris, a delegation from the DSCE and DEWA held meetings with decision-makers and CEOs from the energy, water and environment sectors in France, in a special session that brought together French government agencies, including the French Business Council, the Movement of the Enterprises of France (MEDE)F, the Syndicate of Renewable Energy, the French Trade Commission, the French Business Council in Dubai, in addition to the French Embassy in the UAE. The meetings focused on investment, cooperation, and knowledge exchange in establishing green funds, supporting Dubai’s journey towards a green economy and enhancing its sustainability.

During the conference, Al Tayer launched the State of Green Economy Report 2016, which highlighted the commitment of the UAE and the achievements of Dubai in the field of developing and implementing green agreements in various sectors, to encourage green transformation, reduce carbon emissions and encourage the adoption of a flexible economy that is closely linked to the UN climate agreement 2015.

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