Going Green: Arab Cities Setting Their Sight On Sustainable Projects

Every year on Oct. 31, World Cities Day seeks to raise awareness of how local and regional governments can build greener, more equitable, and more sustainable cities. Many Middle Eastern cities are already moving in the direction of sustainability thanks to initiatives that reduce their reliance on fossil fuels, shrink their carbon footprint, and adopt cleaner and more sustainable methods of construction, agriculture, and transportation.


Dubai is leading the way with the 2050 strategic initiative, which plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 and drive sustainable economic growth. Among those initiatives is the Shams Dubai project, which is Dubai Electricity & Water Authority’s first smart initiative to connect solar energy to buildings. It supports the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to make Dubai the smartest city in the world. Another noteworthy project is Dubai’s Green Economy which attempts to accomplish economic growth while preserving and protecting the environment. For start-ups looking to explore the market potential for green energy, this program is proving to be very advantageous. Additionally, due to Dubai’s steadfast commitment to the transformation of its city, international investors are demonstrating enormous interest in projects supported by the Dubai Government according to ME Construction.


Green Riyadh is one of Riyadh’s four mega projects launched by King Salman Bin Abdulaziz that contributes to fulfilling a key goal of Vision 2030 to promote Riyadh’s position among the world’s top 100 most livable cities. 7.5 million trees will be planted across Riyadh city in 3,330 neighborhood gardens, 43 parks, 9,000 mosques, 6,000 schools, 64 universities, 390 healthcare facilities, and 1,670 public facilities. Not only that but also Riyadh announced back in July that Al Nama smart city will be the first smart zero-carbon destination in Riyadh. The city will promote sustainable living in a 10-square-kilometer community with various hubs including residential, educational, commercial, tourism, and medical.

Sharm El Sheikh

As the city is preparing to host COP27 from Nov. 6 to Nov. 18, Sharm El Sheikh is putting extraordinary efforts to turn the coastal city into an eco-friendly, sustainable, and integrated tourism city, with many projects to increase green spaces citywide and boost reliance on renewables used for transportation and hotels. More than 30 environment-related projects were rolled out recently in the city that includes solar energy projects, a central park, and transportation projects.

These cities are taking on the task of converting their communities into more sustainable settings with those initiatives. They want to build sustainable cities that can incorporate greenery into the urban environment to lower CO2 emissions and enhance air quality. To maintain and safeguard natural resources, they also advocate for renewable energy sources.

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