UAE environment minister named on Young Global Leaders list

Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi has joined an exclusive club of young change-makers from across the globe

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, March 3, 2020.  Federal Natinal Council meeting at the Al Khubeirah Garden.  Thani Ahmed Al-Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment during the Tuesday meeting.
Victor Besa / The National
Section:  NA
Reporter:  Haneen Dajani

The UAE's environment minister has been named among the World Economic Forum's latest Young Global Leaders class.

Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, joins an illustrious list of previous inductees to the YGL, such as human rights lawyer Amal Clooney and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.

He is one of 114 leading change-makers under the age of 40 to be been chosen this year.

YGL was founded in 2004 by Klaus Schwab, the founder and chairman of WEF, with a mission to create a world where leaders take action for a sustainable future. At present, there are 1,300 members and alumni representing 52 countries.

“By championing these promising and accomplished leaders we hope to create positive ripple effects that benefit entire communities," said Mariah Levin, the head of YGL.

"In response to a startling decline in trust in leadership over the past decade, these Young Global Leaders inspire the world through their dynamism, passion and integrity.”

Dr Al Zeyoudi and the other new members will take part in a five-year programme that includes executive education courses, group expeditions and opportunities to collaborate and test ideas with a trusted network of peers.

YGL members teamed up for projects which have had a significant impact on the community globally.

In the past year, the members collaborated to help accelerate refugee entrepreneurship and solve waste management challenges.

The UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment is responsible in developing plans, strategies and policies related to environment, agriculture, fisheries, as well as combating desertification and preserving biodiversity.

It also aims to enhance the quality of agricultural, livestock and fisheries production in the UAE.

The ministry has implemented several initiatives over the years to monitor and enhance agriculture and sustainability in the country.

The authority revealed last month it had launched a bid to replenish and plant more mangroves along the UAE’s coastlines using drones.

Flying low over the ground and firing mangrove seeds into the water, the eco-friendly crafts may become a common sight by next year.

"Mangroves reduce almost 10 times the amount of CO2 emissions in comparison to on-land trees,' said Dr Al Zeyoudi at the time.

“As well as this, they help to purify the water and provide safe areas for fish and other marine life to live and grow.”

Drones were also used recently to disperse six million ghaf and acacia seeds in 25 locations across the UAE to increase greenery and improve air quality.

The ministry is also working towards improving the salaries of UAE farmers.

Also, the ministry has recently launched the Mazaareana smart app, which offers farmers a database that has extensive information on agricultural and veterinary extension services.