New NGO launched to enhance research and sustainability in Qatar
As part of Qatar's investment and long-term commitment to the environment, the Qatar Sustainability Network (QSN) was officially launched in Doha yesterday. At the launch, Nadia Aboul Hosn interim board member at QSN outlined the mandate as a network to cultivate a culture of research, science, and sustainability through active engagement of civil society.
The Qatar Sustainability Network’s aim is to become an active platform for the advancement of science-based sustainability agenda in Qatar and beyond. During COP 18 the upcoming climate change conference to be held in Doha, QSN will be the focal point for Arab non-governmental organisations and it will actively lobby and give advice on the global climate change debate.
Dr. Rabi Mohtar, director of the Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI) said “This new initiative highlights the importance of conservation and sustainability in Qatar. It also encourages collaborations and increased awareness about the crucial role of outreach among the community through the dissemination of science-based information.”
Executive vice president of research and development at Qatar Foundation, Dr. Thomas Zakaria speaking at the launch said, “one of the key focuses of the national research strategy is particularly environmental sustainability and i think that is going to be a major focus in terms of research and innovation. there are many many things we can do as a society, but a civil society starts with each and every one of us, that is the building block of the society.” he added that “there many many things that we can do , there are socio-technical problems at the large scale and the industrial scale, at the city scale but there is also personal accountability in terms of how we approach things.” Speaking to TheEDGE regarding individual involvement in the sustainability network Dr. Mohtar mentions that “We are at the moment looking at the by-laws of the network and you can participate in the network as an individual member or you can be a corporate member, so there are ways and means where you can enter as an individual.”
Also present at the launch was HE Fahad bin Mohammed Al Attiya the executive chairman of the Qatar National Food Security programme which is also part of QSN and the Chairman of the organising sub-committee for COP 18 who stated “We are delighted that Qatar is at the forefront of sustainability outreach plans in the region. This new initiative will demonstrate the country’s commitment to leading a sustained quality of life for future generations and advance the culture of research in Qatar with its international partners.”
(Look out for our interview with Dr. Mohtar, executive director at QEERI, in the upcoming issue of TheEDGE where he discussed in detail Qatar’s leadership in promoting a more sustainable future)