While billion-dollar clean energy deals and ambitious climate funds took centre stage at the Cop28 climate conference in the UAE, several regional and global companies also took the opportunity to announce initiatives aimed at boosting sustainability and lowering their carbon footprint.
At Cop28, the UAE pledged to establish a $30 billion climate-focused fund, while the World Bank, the largest multilateral development bank, committed to raising its climate finance target to $40 billion by 2025, allocating 50 per cent to mitigation and the remainder to adaptation.
Here is a round-up of the announcements made by some of the major companies on the sidelines of the UN summit:
Global payments company MasterCard said that 80 per cent of its cards in the UAE market issued from 2025 would be sustainable, ahead of the company’s global target of 2028.
The UAE's technology conglomerate e& announced the launch of the Sustainability Consultancy Programme in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
The company will provide a free sustainability consultancy, leading to a greenhouse gas assessment of their businesses, to the first eight organisations who wish to be part of the programme and meet the qualification criteria.
To further extend the programme’s impact, other 15 companies will be selected and offered preferential rates.
The company also announced a partnership with World Wide Generation, a British sustainability FinTech company, to launch the “world's largest” global sustainability exchange platform.
Red Sea Global
Saudi Arabia's Red Sea Global, the developer of mega-tourism projects on the kingdom's west coast, announced a “coral commitment”, vowing to protect and regenerate corals in the Red Sea and other regions.
The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation signed an initial agreement with X-energy, a US-based developer of small modular nuclear reactors, to partner on the advancement of nuclear energy technologies.
The company also signed preliminary deals with nuclear energy companies Moltex FLEX and Ultrasafe Nuclear Corporation to advance the development of small modular reactor technologies.
Enec teamed up with Terrestrial Energy, a nuclear plant developer, to “expedite and centralise” the UAE’s approach to using nuclear technology.
Abu Dhabi Waste Management Company, also known as Tadweer, announced the launch of an Integrated Textile Circularity Initiative across the UAE to increase consumer awareness and foster collective efforts among public-private partners throughout the entire value chain.
Sharjah-based environmental management company Beeah Group, Peec Mobility and the Sharjah Research, Technology and Innovation Park launched a partnership to advance the electrification of major vehicle fleets in the emirate.
The National Central Cooling Company, better known as Tabreed, closed its inaugural Dh600 million ($163.3 million) green revolving credit facility in partnership with First Abu Dhabi Bank as the green co-ordinator, alongside Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and Emirates NBD.
The financing agreement, which spans five years, is designed to introduce “highly efficient” cooling solutions into the GCC market.
Emirates NBD, Dubai's biggest lender by assets, arranged a bilateral loan for Chalhoub Group, making the UAE-based luxury retailer’s first sustainability-linked loan.
The short-term loan facility has a tenure of one year with the option of being rolled over at maturity.
First Abu Dhabi Bank
First Abu Dhabi Bank, the UAE’s largest lender by assets, launched its first ESG-orientated fund for its private banking clients.
The fund, managed by FAB Private Bank, aims to capture long-term investment opportunities that address the world’s major social and environmental challenges, as defined by the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Emirates National Oil Company and Japan’s heavy-industry manufacturer IHI Corporation announced the start of a feasibility study for a green ammonia production project.