Dubai Municipality workers pedal on stationary bicycles to power smoothie makers at the 'Cycle for the Planet' booth of Earth Day celebrations. The cycles were set up by Green Hope.
Dubai - A total of 15 Green Hope members turned up at the event to show their support and teach parents and children on the importance of sustainable living.
Cleaning up oil spills, cycling to make smoothies and creating art with Damas tree wood - children at this year's Earth Day event at Kite Beach were busy getting schooled on how to protect their environment.
The Dubai Municipality hosted the event and about 2,000 people turned up to the site, where they were taught on many different ways they can live eco-friendlier lives.
Environmental group Green Hope was volunteering at the event. They had about six cycles set up, which people pedalled to create their own energy and blend fruits to make a smoothie.
Pragna Vasupal from Green Hope told Khaleej Times: "It is getting extremely important for everyone to use their own energy as our dependency on fossil fuels is increasing and people need to learn how to make sustainable choices. This is a great way for people to get started. These kinds of activities also say that buying locally-sourced food is really important, so the carbon footprint is decreased."
A total of 15 Green Hope members turned up at the event to show their support and teach parents and children on the importance of sustainable living.
More than 100 glasses of smoothies were made on Saturday by people who pedalled their way to quench their thirst. Children also took part in an oil spill experiment where oil was spilled onto water and they learned about the impact it has on the environment.
They were also creating artwork by Damas wood, as wood from Damas trees are reusable. Children were taught about how resources as such can be used again, ultimately helping the environment.
Alya Al Harmoudi, Director of the Environment Department in the Dubai Municipality said that Earth Day is a key event on the annual environmental calendar. "The theme this year is extremely important, as education is central to the future fate of our planet. The next generation will drive forward climate action and it's our responsibility to give them the tools and knowledge to do so, and to do so with pride and passion. Teaching children in this setting, while providing fun and relaxation, allows us, as an entity, to connect with them," she said.
Tasnim Salem Al Falasi, Head of the Environmental Awareness Section stressed the importance of a continued dialogue with the public and believes that "environmental and climate issues cannot be overcome by any one entity and instead must be a combined effort of individuals, the community and organisations alike."
Other activities included science experiments for children that demonstrated basic climate and environmental factors such as the formation of clouds.
Children created their own clouds and made them rain and also learned about the basic processes behind cloud formation and precipitation.
Top tips to reduce energy usage, save on utility bills
> Set the AC thermostat at a higher temperature - When the difference between indoor and outdoor temperature is smaller, AC units run more efficiently.
> Include an AC cycling schedule - An AC cycling schedule can significantly reduce the consumption of electricity. During the summer, don't leave it on all day, set a timer instead.
> Avoid heat-emanating app-liances near AC thermostat - The extra heat will cause AC units to run longer than necessary. If you keep them away, your electricity consumption will reduce.
> Turn off the lights - When you leave a room, simply turn off the lights. By reducing the amount of energy consumption, this reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
> Set the refrigerator to the ideal temperature - To increase the energy efficiency of refrigerators at home, set the temperature between 1.5 to 3.5 celsius for food and -18 celsius for the freezer. Regularly defrost the freezer.
> Switch off the tap - Whether you're washing your face, brushing your teeth, or cleaning the dishes, switch off the water when not in use. It can save 13,129 gallons of water each year per person.
> Don't throw it away - We're talking about food here. Reducing food wastage in your home and at restaurants keeps food out of landfills where it produces methane, in turn increasing climate change.
> Unplug unused electronics - While your charger may not consume a drastic amount of power, keeping devices plugged in all day at the same time results in a large jump in energy consumption. Unplugging electrical appliances can save money and energy.
Celebrate every day as Earth Day, say students, parents
Shouldn't every day be earth day?
My sister and I spread eco-awareness by taking part in various environmental activities because I want to make people realise that each and every one of us is responsible for spoiling, but also saving the beauty of our Mother Earth."
Dhanvi Sayani, Gems Our Own English High School, Dubai
The concept of Earth Day is important considering what the world is experiencing due to the destruction of the environment by us humans. Many of us are ignorant to the impact we have on Earth and as such it is importance to create awareness about the environment and Earth Day is an excellent opportunity to do so."
Sharafa Zahir Hassan, Middlesex University, Dubai
"Ever since the dawn of time, humanity has tried to shape nature for its own benefit. Today, nature is no longer malleable. If we bend it too much, the cracks of climate change will seep in. And that's why, for sustaining humankind, let us observe Earth Day and seal the cracks of climate change to allow Mother Earth to heal. So, want to be a real life hero? Then turn off the lights and tap when not in use."
Pritvik Sinhadc, Dubai College, Dubai
"On Earth Day we should plant more and more trees and water them because we live in a very hot climate. We should leave water for our birds too, but this is something we should do every day, not only on Earth Day."
Drishti Kanar, Kindergarten Starters, Dubai
"We as humans should take care of our trees which are getting dried up. We should switch off the lights on Earth Day and continue doing so as it also makes a lot of difference to the climate. People should try and use only one vehicle per each house to minimise air pollution."
Deepa Kanar, parent, Dubai
"Celebrating the importance of Earth is vital to keeping our planet safe. Earth Day will make people more aware about the dangers of polluting and the damage it has already done. And if we carry on how we are it will become too hot for the people to live on in the future."
Mariam Wajid, Kindergarten Starters, Dubai
"Earth day is like ringing an alarm bell for the people to wake up to the reality of climate change and make changes in their lifestyles to reduce pollution."
Kubra Wajid, parent, Dubai