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Qatar makes major strides in sustainable development

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In its efforts to promote sustainable development through green initiatives, Qatar has made great strides to minimize the impact of development on climate change according to a report on Road to ESG Investing by invest Qatar.

The 2022 updated sustainability strategy of Qatar Energy envisions reducing the carbon intensity of its liquefied natural gas facilities by 35 percent by 2030.

The establishment of an 800 MW capacity Siraj solar power plant, technological innovation by QSTech and QSTP towards solar energy, Kahramaa’s sustainability ambitions, and recent achievements through the Tarsheed programme are some of the green initiatives launched by the state, the report notes.

It states that the global push on sustainability has deeply impacted all sectors. Governments and private sector entities are feeling the pressure to give due importance to the environmental, social, and governance aspects. In the US, President’s climate plan calls for USD 2 trillion of investment into low-carbon activities, while the European Union’s (EU) Green Deal aims to pump USD 7 trillion of investment into low-carbon.

Under ESG reporting many initiatives have been undertaken by Qatar such as the launch of ESG guidance by QSE and its initiatives to be ESG compliant Qatar Sustainability Platform to monitor ESG reporting by publicly listed entities in Qatar, the launch of MSCI QSE 20 ESG Index, the opening of Data Portal by TASMU to make the environmental and social data publicly available A number of organisations, including Ooredoo, QNB, and Nakilat, report ESG performance, the report states.

Qatar is playing an active role in transforming its building standards towards higher sustainability levels by adopting the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) standards. GSAS is a performance-based rating system developed for assessing and rating buildings and infrastructure for their sustainability impacts. The number of projects registered for GSAS certifications has been rapidly increasing thereby facilitating the transition towards green buildings¹.

Qatar is preparing to host the first carbon-free FIFA World Cup Championship (WC) in 2022, for which multiple projects are ongoing. In January 2020, the Education City stadium became the first WC venue to get a five-star rating from the GSAS. Al Bayt stadium also followed the suit in July 2020. Most of the 2022 FIFA WC stadiums are cooled using a district cooling system.

The report also notes that Qatar aims to have its entire public fleet system e-powered by 2030. The country signed an agreement with Volkswagen, ‘Project Qatar Mobility’, to introduce a fleet of self-driving level 4 electric shuttles in the capital Doha in 2022. Moreover, MoTC has kept a target to have 25 percent of public transport buses electric by 2022, which includes public buses, public schools’ buses, and Doha Metro feeder buses. To achieve this, MoTC conducted a pilot testing of electric buses in Qatar in collaboration with Kahramaa, Mowasalat (Karwa), and China Harbor Engineering Co way back in 2018.

Source and image credit: The Peninsula.