Ghobash: Zayed was decades ahead of his time in terms of environmental sustainability

WAM ABU DHABI: The late founding father and President of the UAE, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al Nahyan, who championed environmental stewardship and sustainability, was ahead of the World Future Council (WFC), the independent body formally founded in Hamburg, Germany in 2007 to speak on behalf of policy solutions that serve the interests of future generations with climate security, promoting laws such as the renewable energy Feed-in tariff as its primary focus, according to Dr Rafia Ghobash, member of WFC.

“The World Future Council is doing a great job, but we should put in mind that the late Sheikh Zayed was ahead of all others in terms of sustainability, investing in the future, peace and disarmament,” Ghobash, an emirati professor of psychiatry, told WAM on the sidelines of the sixth annual general meeting of the World Future Council (WFC), and the body’s first in an Arab country, which kicked off Thursday in Abu Dhabi.

“I was the first Arab member in the council and took part in founding this body in 2005. I worked towards establishing a presence for Arab countries in this global platform because its philosophy and goals are in line with the strong belief of the people of the UAE and Muslims that mankind is Allah’s vicegerent (representative) on Earth and is tasked with building and protecting Earth and not with making mischief and destroying it,” Gobash said.

She cited the Zayed Future Energy Prize, launched in 2008 to honor innovation, leadership, long-term vision and impact in renewable energy and sustainability, and Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s strategic, long-term renewable energy and sustainability initiative, as bright examples of the UAE’s commitment to walking in the steps of the late Sheikh Zayed and championing environmental stewardship as an integral part of UAE history and heritage.

Prominent personalities from across the globe took part in the WFC’s meeting which is titled ‘Securing Our World: The Crucial Next 5 years’ and will run between 21-25 November. WFC develops policies on climate and energy, urban development, sustainable economies, peace and disarmament.