Protecting the environment and supporting sustainable development are at the forefront of Qatar’s priorities. As one of the first countries to ratify the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1996, Qatar has a long-standing commitment to addressing global environmental challenges. Qatar is an active partner in the international community’s campaign to confront the climate crisis.
“The State of Qatar has placed climate change at the forefront of its priorities, and it continues to take the necessary measures to develop climate change-related technologies and clean energy”. His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, September 2021
International cooperation for a greener future
Qatar signed the Kyoto Protocol in 2005, an agreement which marked an important milestone in which the international community agreed for the first time on binding targets and measures for combating climate change.
In 2012, more than 20,000 delegates and key members from governments, UN Organizations and civil society gathered in Doha for the Eighteenth Session of the Conference of States Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Qatar spared no effort to ensure the success of negotiations of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement and is a proud signatory of the seminal treaty.
Additionally, Qatar supports global efforts to promote sustainability through projects assisting those most affected by climate change.
During the Climate Action Summit in September 2019, His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, announced the State of Qatar’s contribution of $100 million to support small island developing states and least developed countries to address climate change and environmental challenges.
Ambitious sustainability goals
Qatar’s National Environment and Climate Change Strategy (QNE) provides a robust policy framework to safeguard Qatar’s environment for future generations.
Qatar, like its Gulf neighbours, is highly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.
The establishment of the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change was in accordance with the decree issued by His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, the Amir of the State of Qatar, under law No. 57 of 2021. The ministry’s primary mission is to safeguard environmental quality and preserve its resources for both current and future generations, achieved through an efficient regulatory framework.
“The newly established Ministry of Environment and Climate Change will have a fundamental role in the success of sustainable development projects, achieving the State’s goals in preserving the environment, promoting green growth and limiting the effects of climate change”. HE Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser bin Ahmed Al Thani, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, February 2022
In September 2021, Qatar’s Council of Ministers approved the National Climate Change Plan, a strategic framework reflecting Qatar’s long-term sustainability ambitions and the urgent need to respond effectively to the climate crisis.
An integral part of the Qatar National Vision 2030 and in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the plan sets out Qatar’s commitment to tackle climate change by diversifying the economy, building capabilities, and optimising the use of natural resources. It establishes national climate targets to enhance climate resilience through more than 35 measures and over 300 adaptation initiatives focused on mitigation.
Commitment to environmental research
Research plays a crucial role in assessing potential environmental risks and identifying solutions.
Qatar’s effective and sophisticated environmental institutions carry out relevant research while building and strengthening public awareness about ecological protection as well as encouraging the use of green technologies. The Government of Qatar provides full support to emerging companies and research hubs that ensure constant innovation and development in areas of environmental preservation, sustainability and technology.
The Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP) is a leading hub of applied research, technology innovation, incubation and entrepreneurship. Several of its projects aim to deliver cleaner burning and more efficient fuels, while identifying new ways of producing energy.
The Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI) conducts and coordinates long-term and multidisciplinary research that addresses critical national priorities related to water security, energy and environment.
Qatar is home to Lusail City and Msheireb Downtown, both smart and sustainable cities, that were designed to combine planet friendly technology with optimised urban planning. These cities both meet the highest environmental standards and promote environmental stewardship and research.
Most notably, Msheireb Downtown is the world’s first sustainable downtown regeneration project.
Designed to limit the need for personal car use, Msherieb Downtown is mitigating carbon emissions and congested traffic grids. The district was designed to sustainably conserve water using new technologies and practices that are reducing water usage by up to 30% as well as increase energy efficiency through more than 5,200 photovoltaic (PV) solar panels that provide both electricity and hot water.
Lusail City is equipped with a state-of-the-art District Cooling System, which is amongst the biggest in the world and has been designed to save 65 million tons of CO² annually. The city also hosts a light rail train, a park and ride strategy, and a cycle and pedestrian ways system that provide reliable and eco-friendly transportation solutions.
Throughout Qatar, the Qatar Green Building Council conducts and deploys environmentally sustainable practices for the design and development of sustainable infrastructure.
Qatar has made significant investments in green public transportation and infrastructure projects to provide an integrated, world-class, multimodal transportation system that offers safe, reliable and eco-friendly transport services.
The Doha Metro is the backbone of Qatar’s vision for an integrated public transport system and aims to revolutionise the way people move around Doha. The metro serves the capital’s locations quickly, conveniently and safely – making it a far more sustainable option to the private car, and all metro stations are designed to operate in such a way to reduce the impact on the environment particularly in terms of energy and water consumption.
Hamad Port provides the State with a modern, resilient sea-freight connection hub that is guided by internationally accepted sustainability criteria, ensuring that materials selection, water consumption and energy use are aligned to minimise its carbon footprint.
Qatar Airways is committed to working with the aviation industry towards realising environmental goals and is certified under the IATA’s Environmental Assessment programme which provides a framework for delivering continual improvement of environmental performance across business functions.
A source for clean energy
Qatar is a leading exporter of one of the cleanest fuels in the world, helping countries meet their energy needs while reducing carbon emissions from coal.
As a global energy producer, Qatar Energy launched a new Sustainability Strategy in January 2021 that illustrates its commitment to people and planet. The strategy establishes a number of targets in alignment with the goals of the Paris Agreement and sets in motion a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2030.
Qatar’s first large-scale solar power plant was announced in January 2020 and will provide sustainable, affordable and clean energy to Qatari citizens and businesses.
Additionally, Qatar is conducting long-term research to address environmental priorities in the energy sector, from reducing methane to working with strategic partners to develop and integrate carbon capture and storage technologies across operations.
Delivering a sustainable FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™
Qatar’s commitment to sustainability is evident in its preparation for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, where sustainability was integrated into the tournament’s design and delivery, focusing on key areas like infrastructure, environment, social development, and entrepreneurship. Learn more about Qatar’s efforts to ensure a lasting legacy here.
As part of its long-term strategy to drive economic diversification and digital transformation, Qatar hosted the second edition of Smart City Expo Doha 2022, which presented some of the best smart solutions and applications to build a better future centred on sustainability.
The panels, which brought experts from around the world, discussed the potential role of artificial intelligence, blockchain and cloud computing in the transformation of urban management. They also highlighted the ironic role of the COVID-19 pandemic in fast-tracking the development of digital tools and smart applications to overcome the pressing challenges brought about by the pandemic itself.
The event attracted 2,500 visitors, who attended three keynote sessions and listened to over 70 speakers from various backgrounds and expertise in digital transformation and smart cities. Some 20 countries as well as 40 exhibitors and sponsors were featured in the event organised by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) in partnership with Tasmu Smart Qatar.
In 2019, the first edition of Smart City Expo Doha 2019, which focused on smart technology and start-ups, was organised by the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC) in partnership with Fira Barcelona. The event featured more than 90 speakers, 100 start-ups, 300 exhibitors and 300 entrepreneurs and innovators, who shared ideas about the most recent smart solutions to challenges facing today’s modern cities.
As a pioneer in technological advancement, the State of #Qatar is hosting the 2nd Edition of Smart City Expo Doha 2022 organised by @TasmuQa and @MCITQatar. This event brings digital experts together to exchange innovative ideas, with the goal of creating a better future. pic.twitter.com/mwPavxpYqt