03. June 2023 — Press Release
03.06.2023 — خبر صحفى

Ahead of World Environment Day Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi and Emirates Nature-WWF launch COP28 Youth Climate and Nature series

  • HE Mohammed Al Bowardi, inaugurates COP28 Youth Climate and Nature Series celebrating World Environment Day at Environment Agency Headquarter, Abu Dhabi 
  • Series launched with an innovative nature and climate-themed escape room, titled ‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ which offers participants an interactive way to experience the science behind climate change and nature-based Solutions 
  • Escape Room to embark on a tour of the nation during the Year of Sustainability

Abu Dhabi 3rd June 2023: As part of World Environment Day celebrations, HE Mohammed Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs and Vice Chairman of the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD) and Chairman of Emirates Nature-WWF inaugurated the launch of COP28 Youth Climate and Nature Series, developed by EAD, in collaboration with Emirates Nature-WWF to expand the active community of volunteers and citizen scientists in the UAE throughout the Year of Sustainability and COP28. The youth and community engagement strategy aims to ensure a legacy beyond COP28 in which members of the wider community are aware of, and involved in, large-scale conservation programmes on the ground. 

The climate and nature series was introduced alongside the launch of a unique Connect with Nature activation, the ‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ Escape Room, in the presence of HE Dr Shaikha Salem Al Dhaheri, EAD’s Secretary General, Laila Mostafa Abdullatif, Director General of Emirates Nature-WWF and Ahmed Baharoon, EAD’s Executive Director Environmental Information, Science and Outreach Management Sector as well as students from government and private schools in Abu Dhabi. 

The escape room highlights the imperative action of Nature-based Solutions (NbS) and showcases how the UAE is undertaking essential projects to build climate resilience and engaging youth and the wider community to partake in and lead initiatives on the ground. 

This activation at Al Mamoura is sponsored by Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (ADNIC), one of the leading regional multi-line insurance providers for corporates and individuals.

An Innovative Experience for the Community

‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ presents an opportunity to physically experience the science behind climate adaptation, offering the whole community a chance to understand the complexity of climate resilience and action in a simple, interactive manner. 

Set in a virtual mangrove forest during adverse weather conditions, participants will embark on a meaningful adventure to escape the impacts of climate change and safeguard our natural heritage, by relying on the restorative powers of mangroves. 

The activation aims to nudge community members to take action for nature. Following the escape room experience, participants can sign up to volunteer for nature-based activities and become citizen scientists to tackle real, impactful, conservation work happening on the ground in the UAE via the Sahim and Leaders of Change movements. 

Therefore, after enjoying the Escape Room, youth can volunteer to be part of Sahim which is an initiative launched by EAD and Emirates Nature-WWF. Sahim aims to harness the power of community participation and drive a new era of citizen-science via a portfolio of volunteering opportunities in Abu Dhabi. Citizen scientists will gather useful data about local species and habitats that contributes to conservation research and decision-making. 

Members of the public can also sign up for Emirates Nature-WWF’s Leaders of Change - an annual membership programme that mobilises UAE society to maximise their impact and create change on the ground through trainings, ideation sessions and exciting volunteering excursions across the nation. Volunteers can track their impact through the programme’s pioneering digital platform.

Nationwide Tour in the Year of Sustainability

The escape room begins its tour of the Nation at Al Mamoura, Abu Dhabi, following this activation, the escape room caravan will continue its tour of the nation throughout the Year of Sustainability, inspiring thousands of participants to experience the science behind climate action. Participants will also be encouraged to partake in global climate conversations and join the UAE’s largest volunteer movements for nature – Sahim and Leaders of Change. 

H.E. Dr Shaikha Salem Al Dhaheri, Secretary General of the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD), commented: “Today’s youth are tomorrow’s leaders. This influential group of young people have made it clear that they are concerned about the environment and are interested in being part of the national response to climate change. Initiatives like the ‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ Escape Room provide a pathway for UAE youth and the community to understand the science and complexity involved in building climate resiliency, empowering them to step up and make greater contributions towards climate and nature, through citizen science and volunteerism.” 

Laila Mostafa Abdullatif, Director General of Emirates Nature-WWF commented, “Nature is a powerful ally in our journey to combat climate change, and Nature-based Solutions (NbS) are an integral component of national and global responses to climate change. Emirates Nature-WWF is actively implementing NbS at demonstration sites across the UAE and is developing insights to share at the COP28 climate conference. 

“The ‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ Escape Room offers an immersive platform through which we can raise awareness about the crucial role of nature in building climate resiliency. As the caravan makes its way across the nation, we aim to inspire thousands of youth and members of the wider UAE community to pave the way towards a greener future, by signing up to volunteer movements Sahim and Leaders of Change.” 

Youth and members of the public are invited to come and experience the ‘Escape Climate Change – Mangrove Edition’ Escape Room and can follow the national roadshow tour across Connect with Nature, Environment Agency Abu-Dhabi and Emirates Nature-WWF social media channels.