COP18/CMP8 and Friends of the Environment Centre join forces
- Qatar: Tuesday, October 16 - 2012 at 11:09
- PRESS RELEASE
Qatar's top opinion formers will officially start the journey towards the UN Climate Change Conference 2012 through a meeting gathering civil society leaders at the "Green Tent" of the country's leading environmental group.
The meeting is an initiative of two bodies: the organisers of COP18/CMP8 Doha - the 2012 UN Climate Change Conference; and the Friends of the Environment Centre - Qatar's most prominent environmental group. It will take place on Monday, October 15, from 7pm in the Green Tent of the Friends of the Environment Centre, on Al-Rasheed Street, near the Sports Roundabout in central Doha.
The meeting comes as many ministries, led by the Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs, launch programmes to raise awareness among their employees of the need to be more environmentally aware, to coincide with COP18/CMP8 Doha.
Many other organisations central to Qatari life are also playing an active role. For example, in more than 150 mosques across Qatar, there will be a series of sermons and lectures through November to raise awareness about climate change and the importance of reducing energy and water use.
Those attending the meeting on October 15 - including government figures, members of community groups and civil society - will hear full details of the conference, which takes place between November 26 and December 7, and how residents can get involved. They will also be told about the work of the Friends of the Environment Centre, and how it will be closely involved in COP18/CMP8 Doha.
H.E. Fahad Bin Mohammed Al-Attiya, the Chairman of the Organising Sub-Committee for COP18/CMP8 Doha, and members of the outreach and public information team, will explain the role of the conference.
H.E. Al-Attiya said: "One of the reasons we wanted to host COP18/CMP8 is to highlight the positive contribution to environmental awareness that Qatar is already making. The work of the Friends of the Environment Centre is invaluable to the education of future generations and COP18/CMP8 Doha is proud to be able to help promote its good work."
The event is being hosted by Dr. Saif Ali Al-Hajari, the chairman of the Friends of the Environment Centre. Dr. Al-Hajari is a climate protection pioneer, who has been working for decades to raise awareness of Qatar's fragile eco-system and its connection with the wider world. Dr. Al-Hajari manages, promotes and protects the Al Khor mangrove centre, north of Doha, where schoolchildren can learn about the importance of these beautiful plants that are also natural carbon "sinks" and help to plant them. Mangroves can absorb 50 times more carbon than a tropical forest, and so can play a big role in removing climate change gases from the environment.
Dr. Al-Hajari said: "We try to show the children that they have a responsibility to their environment. We train them and they help us take the message home to their families. Through the children, we can also change the behaviour of their parents."
The Friends of the Environment group is one of the main non-governmental organisations in Qatar that focuses on conservation. The mission of the group is to encourage youngsters to be more aware of their environment and to get involved with projects, such as planting mangroves at Al Khor.
The group also works with H.H. Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser, who runs campaigns to raise awareness about environmental issues in Qatar. These include the "A Flower Each Spring" scheme, which encourages residents to plant native species of flower.
The Friends of the Environment Centre is influential, not only in Qatar but also within the international community. Its work over recent decades has given it the capacity to bring knowledge to Qatar and, more importantly, to share Qatari knowledge with the international community. It acts as an environmental ambassador of Qatar in international forums including BirdLife International. Its connections with projects promoted by H.H. Sheikha Moza, cultural events and organisations such as the International Union for Conservation of Nature, as well as with government officials, means it can exert its influence and push for crucial change.
The group's contribution to COP18/CMP8 Doha will be vital to the international conversation on climate change.
Hala Kilani, the Outreach and Public Engagement Director for COP18/CMP8, said: "The Friends of the Environment Centre is one of the most applauded Qatari organisations and the most closely connected to the local community. It is also one of the best known and most active, locally and internationally. Friends of the Environment is a well-established group that has been very keen and proactive from the start and has helped us to connect with NGOs from Gulf countries who also want to participate."
In the coming weeks Friends of the Environment Centre will be helping the COP18/CMP8 team encourage other NGOs and Doha residents to get involved with climate change action.
Articles in this section are primarily provided directly by the companies appearing or PR agencies which are solely responsible for the content. The companies concerned may use the above content on their respective web sites provided they link back to http://www.ameinfo.com
Any opinions, advice, statements, offers or other information expressed in this section of the AMEinfo.com Web site are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of AME Info FZ LLC / 4C. AME Info FZ LLC / 4C is not responsible or liable for the content, accuracy or reliability of any material, advice, opinion or statement in this section of the AMEinfo.com Web site.