Salalah – The Arab Conference on Sustainable Cities – Cities and Green Economy – kicked off in Salalah on Wednesday.
Organised by the Environment Authority, in association with Dhofar Municipality and the Arab Towns Organization, the opening of the two-day conference was held under the patronage of H H Sayyid Marwan bin Turki al Said, Governor of Dhofar, in the presence of several government officials and experts from Oman and abroad.
In his opening speech, H E Abdullah bin Ali al Omari, president of Environment Authority, said that in the main agenda of the conference – Cities and Green Economy – participants will elaborate on the fact that sustainability of cities can only be achieved through green economies.
“Green economy is development based on the safety of the environment and the sustainability of its natural resources.”
H E Omari added that preserving the environment is a collective responsibility that is not limited by the political borders of states. “It is a duty of every individual.”
The sultanate, H E Omari informed, is keen to protect the environment and preserve natural resources at the national, regional and international level.
He added that Oman Vision 2040 is based on four pillars, including one related to the environment and natural resources. “We are working in cooperation with experts from the United Nations to launch green economy laboratories, in addition to offering a number of investment opportunities in natural reserves and supporting a project to plant wild trees with economic and medical returns.”
In his opening statement, Ahmed bin Hamad al Sabeeh, secretary-general of the Arab Towns Organization, stressed the need to spread the green economy in light of the great challenges the world is going through currently as a result of climate change. “The close link between environment and development has led to the emergence of the concept of green economy.”
He explained that the green economy is one of the new models of rapid economic development without disturbing the ecosystem, especially with the increase in the world’s population.
He said the Arab Towns Organization is keen to support sustainable development in Arab cities through a series of programmes and initiatives, in addition to sponsoring plans and strategies that contribute to supporting sustainable development.