The UAE’s Jubail Island has highlighted five ways through which it is helping improve the environment as part of its commitment to protect the biodiversity and wildlife and become an eco-friendly destination.
Since the first facilities at Jubail Island were opened to the public in January 2020, steps have been taken by Jubail Island to help conserve the island’s nature and surroundings and raise awareness on the importance of the environment through strategic partnerships and collaborations.
With the Emirate of Abu Dhabi established as an environmental hotspot, Jubail Island is continuing the vision of the UAE’s late Founding Father, His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to protect and preserve the mangrove population within the capital and enhance the UAE’s ecosystem.
Abdulla Saeed Al Shamsi, Operations Corporate Director of Jubail Island Investment Company said: “At Jubail Island, every day is World Environment Day as we continue to strengthen our position as a leading environmental destination in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
“While we are proud of what we have achieved in terms of looking after our biodiversity and wildlife that has attracted thousands of visitors to our site and key partnerships being secured, we know there’s so much more we can do. We will ensure that the island will continue to be an eco-friendly destination that will benefit people and our wildlife for years to come.”
Here are five initiatives under Jubail Island which are positioning the island as a sustainable destination that benefits the wildlife and visitors:
Jubail Mangrove Park
As one of the most popular landmarks in the capital, Jubail Mangrove Park is the first self-contained educational, nature and leisure destination of its kind in Abu Dhabi. Since opening in January 2020, the destination has attracted a large number of visitors including VIPs such as Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, with the opportunity to enjoy the park while appreciating and improving their understanding of the delicate ecosystem and rich biodiversity.
With the mangroves a key feature of the park, cultural and ecological information are also on display throughout the site, making the visits an enjoyable experience.
Jubail Mangrove Park offers various programs – in partnership with EAD and other environmental entities of the region – that help raise awareness around the mangroves and their biodiversity. It is also home to educational programs for school children and companies as part of their CSR programs to get the chance to explore and learn more about the nature, wildlife and mangroves. The park also offers guided tours with rangers, and tree planting for a lifetime experience with the Island’s mangroves ecosystem.
BAADR: Discounts and admission on certain activities for eco-friendly users
Jubail Mangrove Park is among the vendors on BAADR, a unique smartphone application, launched by the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi that rewards people for completing different environmental actions that will help protect the environment across Abu Dhabi.
Users can earn points by completing a wide range of tasks that are based on BAADR’s seven different environmental themes: Reuse, Switch, Grow, Initiate, Conserve, Join and Move. Tasks include ways of reducing the amount of water and electricity, buying locally or using public transport.
Users can redeem their points at Jubail Mangrove Park with incentives including free boardwalk admission at Jubail Mangrove Park, mangrove tree planting activities and a 10 per cent discount on kayaking.
One million mangroves to be planted over next eight years
As part of the UAE’s objective to plant 100 million mangroves trees by 2030, JIIC has pledged to plant an additional 1 million new mangroves on the island. To date, more than 350,000 seedlings have already been planted on Jubail Island.
Mangroves are an important part of UAE’s natural assets. As well providing a haven for wildlife, and releasing oxygen, mangroves can also help reduce greenhouse gases which causes climate change. Once the planting process is completed at Jubail Mangrove Park, the 1.35 million trees will help capture an additional 1,150 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.
Jubail Island partners with Etihad Airways
Jubail Island Investment Company (JIIC) and Etihad Airways signed a strategic agreement earlier this year that will see 182,000 mangrove trees being planted over the next five years at Jubail Island. This new mangrove initiative will allow the introduction of new water channels to increase natural tidal flow conveyance into the surrounding wetland areas at Jubail Island.
The collaboration with Etihad Airways also helps promote Jubail Island as a popular ecotourism destination in Abu Dhabi, attracting international visitors to the island.
Emirates NBD to plant more mangroves at Jubail Island
Emirates NBD is also another organisation to join hands with JIIC after announcing an initiative that will see the bank welcome its newly on-boarded clients for the next chapter of their sustainable development journey by gifting them trees. In total, more than 3,000 trees will be planted at the destination.