The world is standing under the exceptional circumstances imposed by the repercussions of the outbreak of the emerging coronavirus “Covid 19”, on the threshold of a new stage that requires transforming the “culture of rationalization of consumption” into a practical reality and daily behavior, at the level of individuals and institutions.
All countries realize that exceeding the current stage is closely linked to the preservation of their natural and economic resources, whatever their abundance, and the efficiency of their management in a manner that ensures their continuity, in a way that meets the future needs of their societies.
In the UAE, the great success in dealing with the repercussions of the crisis, especially in terms of providing food, medicine and energy sources, did not prevent the discussion from many consumer habits in society and calling for adopting wiser behaviors based on rationalizing expenditures and preserving natural resources.
On the food front, the UAE has demonstrated, during the current global crisis, professionalism in dealing with the challenge of securing food supplies for all its residents, and has succeeded in maintaining the abundance of foodstuffs in all outlets without raising their prices.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, has assured all who live on the land of the Emirates that the provision of food and medicine in the country will be available indefinitely with the help of God.
His Highness affirmed that food security is an integrated system that is not only related to food production, but also a culture of dealing with it, stressing the culture of rationalizing consumption and abandoning the extravagance habit that does not conform to the teachings of the Islamic religion.
In response to His Highness’s directives, a number of government agencies and institutions are preparing to launch several initiatives aimed at increasing consumer awareness.
For its part, the Ministry of Economy intends to implement two initiatives titled “Buying as needed” and “Choosing the purchase outlet”, with the aim of expanding the scope of rationalization in the purchase of foodstuffs, and the mechanism for dealing with strategic stocks of goods and foodstuffs, while at the same time raising the monthly saving rates, and that By restricting or reducing household spending items and optimal use of goods, reducing or even moving away from unnecessary leisure goods and luxuries.
For its part, the Emirates Red Crescent Authority continues to implement the “Grace Conservation Project”, which started two years ago, to treat the phenomenon of excessive consumption of foodstuffs, especially through the initiative of the Ambassador of Grace Conservation, which included many governmental and private institutions at the state level.
The Authority applies, through the Grace Preservation project, multiple procedures to achieve the maximum benefit from the wasted food quantities, based on two parts: the first by recycling the remaining food to go to the needy families as it has already been applied for years, while the second part, which is innovative, is that Food that is not suitable for use in the manufacture of fertilizers for plants and animal food.
In 2018, the UAE launched the National Strategy for Food Security, which aims to develop a comprehensive national system based on multiple foundations, including activating legislation and policies that contribute to reducing food loss and waste by 15%, where the value of food wasted annually is estimated at 6 billion Dirhams, ensuring food safety, improving nutrition systems, and enhancing capacity to cope with food security risks and crises.
On the energy front, the UAE is considered one of the leading countries in the world in adopting policies to rationalize energy consumption in its various forms, which constitute a basic axis in all future strategies launched in this regard.
The Emirates Energy Strategy 2050 is the first unified energy plan in the country that balances the production and consumption aspects and the global environmental obligations, and ensures a comfortable economic environment for growth in all sectors.
The strategy aims to raise the efficiency of individual and institutional consumption by 40%, to raise the contribution of clean energy to the total mix of energy produced in the country from 25% to 50%, and to achieve savings equivalent to 700 billion dirhams until 2050.
The strategy takes into account an annual demand growth of 6% and a reduction in carbon emissions from the electricity production process by 70% over the next three decades.
In turn, the water security strategy of the UAE 2036 aims to ensure the sustainability and continuity of access to water during natural and extreme emergency conditions, in line with the laws of the country and the specifications of the World Health Organization, and contribute to achieving prosperity and prosperity of society and the sustainability of the growth of the national economy.
The strategy seeks to halve the average per capita consumption, with a focus on establishing sustainable practices, and also seeks to develop a water supply system that maintains storage capacity for two days under normal conditions, equivalent to the availability of water supply in the storage system for 16 days in emergency situations, with Maintaining a sustainable economy, equal to supply, for a period that may exceed 45 days in extreme emergencies.