ABU DHABI — The Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi (EAD) requested UAE residents to make a different New Year Resolution this year, a green one.
“With the intent to signify a new beginning, people all over the world typically make resolutions, or promises to start or stop something at New Years, such as lose weight, quit smoking or get a better job. The New Year is just around the corner and the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD) is calling on the community to make this year’s resolutions all about protecting our environment,” the agency said on Wednesday.
“EAD is asking people to commit to three green resolutions for 2011: To turn off all electrical appliances when not in use, to use a bucket and not a hose when washing their car and to vote for Bu Tinah Island as one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature,” the agency said in a statement.
With the first resolution, people are being asked to take a small step to save energy which can help make a big difference to the country’s carbon footprint, i.e. turning off the lights when one leaves the room, unplugging appliances when not in use, switching to energy-saving bulbs and shutting down your computer at the end of the day.
The second resolution, using a bucket instead of a hose when washing the car, will help save water. “In the UAE, almost all water we use comes from desalinating seawater — a process which emits large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. If only 30,000 people across the UAE washed their car with a sponge instead of a hose, we could save enough water to fill 20,000 bathtubs!,” the agency said.
On the third resolution, the EAD is encouraging people across the nation to support the campaign to vote for Bu Tinah Island as one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. Bu Tinah Island, off the coast of Abu Dhabi, has been shortlisted in an international competition along with such well-known natural icons as the Great Barrier Reef and the Galapagos Islands. Home to the world’s healthiest population of dugongs – dolphin-like ‘sea cows’ that graze on sea grass – as well as unique coral reefs found nowhere else on planet earth, Bu Tinah is the only finalist from the Arabian Gulf region.
The dugong, a cousin of the manatee found in Florida in US has become extinct in several parts of the world and is on the World Conservation Union’s ‘Red List’ of endangered species.
“EAD is calling on people everywhere to spearhead efforts to raise Bu Tinah’s profile among the community in the UAE and internationally in order to help ensure the long-term conservation of both the dugong and its Bu Tinah habitat.”
To help keep Bu Tinah protected, one can SMS ‘Butinah’ to 3888. Voting for Bu Tinah is also possible by visiting one of the voting booths located at Abu Dhabi’s Marina Mall or Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates until January 15, 2011, or by logging into www.butinah.com to vote.”— firstname.lastname@example.org