Was one of your 2024 new year’s resolutions to do more to protect the planet?
Well, joining in with one of the UAE’s many sustainability focused events is a great way to start.
From community clean ups to vegan markets and global green energy summits, these are some of the most worthwhile dates for your diary in 2024.
Azraq Beach Cleanups
Azraq, meaning ‘blue’ in Arabic, is on a mission to protect the UAE’s marine ecosystems. Launched in 2017, it has so far hosted more than 50 beach clean ups, and collected more than 1.4 tonnes of harmful marine debris, and over 70,000 cigarette butts. Open to Azraq members and non-members, the regular coastal litter picks offer a fulfilling and rewarding way of giving back to the community, and spending time in the fresh air.
Members: free, non-members AED 25. Next event January 28, Sunset Beach, Dubai. azraqme.org.
Emirates Nature – WWF events
Emirates Nature – WWF, the non-profit organisation dedicated to driving positive change in the UAE, hosts over a dozen volunteer events every month. Ranging from clean ups in the mountains of Fujairah, to conservation kayaking through the mangroves of Abu Dhabi, and tree planting in Umm Al Quwain, there’s plenty for all ages and abilities to enjoy. Most events are completely free of charge, while some require a participation fee. If you want to get really involved, becoming a member of the Leaders of Change movement lets you participate in more exclusive experiences such as moonlight wildlife photography sessions.
Prices vary. For more information visit leadersofchange.ae/events/event-calendar.
Goumbook – Save The Butts clean ups
After food packaging, cigarettes are the second most common item found in coastal cleanups across the world. Thankfully, social enterprise Goumbook has come up with a way of transforming cigarette butts into sustainable materials. Since its launch in February 2022, the Save The Butts campaign has so far removed more than 880,000 cigarette butts from the beaches of the UAE. Group cigarette clean ups are organised throughout the year at various local beaches, and participation is free for all. Keep an eye on the Goumbook Instagram for details about how to sign up for the next one.
Resonating Tides Exhibition
Available to view until March 3 at the Women’s Pavilion, Expo City Dubai, Resonating Tides features beautiful climate change-inspired works from 11 brilliant female artists. By highlighting the natural wonders of our seas and landscapes, and the powerful role that water plays in connecting different nations, the thought-provoking paintings and artworks hope to encourage sustainable action.
From AED 50. Entry included with the Attractions Pass or Women’s Pavilion Pass. Until March 3, 2024. Expo City Dubai. expocitydubai.com.
Sustainable Souq Dubai
The ultimate experience for every green-minded shopaholic, Sustainable Souq Dubai has grown from strength-to-strength in recent months. Featuring dozens of stalls selling sustainable clothing and accessories, homemade beauty products, ethical homeware, organic fruit, veg and food products, it’s quickly becoming one of the highlights of the calendar. Along with being a great opportunity to support local and eco-conscious businesses, and buy amazing and unique items that no one else will have, the whole experience is enhanced with a programme of enlightening workshops, activities and talks.
Free. Next event January 21 at NH Collection Palm Jumeirah. @sustainablesouk.
The Kinder Life Sustainable Festival 2024
Combining all the amazing vegan skin care, kids’ clothes, gifts, and homeware of the Not Just For Vegans market with sustainable workshops and presentations, kids’ activities and delicious vegan food tasting, The Kinder Life Sustainable Festival 2024 is an occasion not to be missed. Celebrating all things eco-friendly and plant-powered, it also features interactive conversation hubs, and an inspiring talk from Middle East Vegan Society founder and animal rights activist Seb Alex. All in all, it’s the ideal Sunday afternoon activity.
Free. January 28, 12pm to 6pm at The Irish Village Dubai. @notjustforvegansmarket.
World Environmental Education Congress
Dedicated to environmental and sustainable education, the 12th edition of the World Environmental Education Congress is coming to Abu Dhabi this January. Bringing together 3,00 delegates from across the world for three days of workshops, talks, networking and sustainability-focused field trips, it’s also open to educators, teachers, students, professionals, and NGO workers. Access passes can be purchased in advance, or onsite.
From AED 550. January 29 to February 2, ADNEC, Abu Dhabi, sustainability-live.com.
World Future Energy Summit 2024
As one of the world’s leading business events for renewable energy innovators, the World Future Energy Summit is dedicated to driving forward thesustainable energy transition. Open to all experts, businesses and start-ups involved in solar power, clean energy, smart cities and recycling, it offers an unmissable opportunity to learn more about sustainable solutions, and meet the key players who are working to make the world a better place. Featuring live demonstrations, endless networking sessions, and exhibit stands from some of the world’s most interesting brands, it’s an essential experience for anyone interested in the future of sustainability.