The City of Nouakchott – Perspectives and Challenges

Nouakchott, capital city of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, is the biggest city in the Sahara region. Like other major cities worldwide, the city is plagued by environmental, social and economical challenges. Sewage disposal network, dating back to 1960’s is no longer sufficient for Nouakchott. The country is heavily dependent on fossil fuels and woody biomass for meeting energy requirements, though there is good potential of solar, wind and biomass energy. Solid waste management is becoming a major headache for city planners. Population is increasing at a tremendous pace which is putting tremendous strain on meagre civic resources. Making of … Continue reading

Why You Need an Eco-Friendly Water Filter at Home

There is no doubt that water plays a vital role in our daily lives. Come to think of it, there must be a reason as to why it’s often referred to as ” life”. Basically, everything we do revolves around it. You cook with it, use it to shower, drink, clean, water plants and the list is endless. Therefore,  weighing all these uses, it’s apparent that we need to pay close attention to the source and state of the water we use to avoid contaminates. From the famous chlorine, pesticides to the less known prescription drugs, there is so much … Continue reading

SEA as Sustainability Mainstreaming and Planning Tool in Jordan

Seeking to find its own recipe for sustainability planning, Jordan is piloting Strategic Environmental Assessment as a tool for planning and managing development zones or special economic areas. Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) is a systematic process for evaluating the environmental consequences of proposed policy, strategy or master plan in order to ensure they are fully included and appropriately addressed at the earliest appropriate stage of decision-making on par with economic and social consideration. Using a unique model, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has prepared Strategic Environmental Assessment and Strategic Environmental Management Plan (SEMP) for the Dead Sea Development Zone which was … Continue reading

Sickness of Buildings – Causes, Risks and Solutions

Environment is not only important for its own sake, but also as a resource for healthier living conditions and well-being. Poor environmental quality and its current and future impact on human health is a significant concern worldwide. Air pollution causes significant health problems. In fact, knowledge about the links between health and air quality has considerably improved in the last few decades. According to a WHO report, more than 30% of new and renovated buildings worldwide may generate severe complaints related to indoor air quality. What is Sick Building Syndrome Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) is used to describe situations in which … Continue reading

Gas Flaring and Venting in MENA: Need for Urgent Action

Every year global oil producers waste precious natural gas by flaring and venting equivalent to the combined gas consumption of Central and South America. The top twenty major gas flaring and venting countries in the world include Russia, Nigeria, Iran, Iraq, Angola, Venezuela, Qatar, Algeria, the United States, Kuwait, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Equatorial Guinea, Libya, Mexico, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Congo, the United Kingdom, and Gabon. Gas flaring and venting have been known to be associated with crude oil processing in oil fields. Newer oil wells are equipped for the recovery of both oil well gas and crude oil and hence the gas … Continue reading

Greening Your Business

With growing awareness among consumers for eco-friendly products, it is becoming highly important for businesses in the Middle East to adopt and implement green strategies. It is not only the requirement of customers but also compliance to regulations and reduction in operating costs that drive the implementation of environment-friendly methods in business. Corporate social responsibility (or CSR) is now driven by pollution prevention, energy efficiency, eco-friendly design, and industrial ecology across all industrial sectors.  Components of a Green Business A green business appears to be an expensive and cumbersome process. On the contrary it is quite easy to have a green … Continue reading

Sustainability Principles in Traditional Islamic Architecture

Islam came with many sustainability and environmental conservation principles, which appeared in all aspects of the Islamic society. This green vision of Islam is also reflected in the city planning and traditional architecture. Infact, Islamic cities were shaped by Islamic beliefs on environmental conservation and sustainability. The traditional house adopted in Islamic architecture respects the environment in more ways than one: first by minimizing the impact of harsh natural environment conditions such as hot climate, relative humidity and solar radiation intensity, second by maximizing the potential possibilities of these conditions to achieve the thermal comfort of inhabitants and utilizing the … Continue reading

Top 5 Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Footprint

With recent reports on the staggering amount of plastic waste floating in our oceans, rivers and lakes, it is high time we start doing something about this problem. Recycling is good, but for many reasons, it is not the answer to the global plastic pollution. We must all learn how to reduce the amount of plastic waste we are producing in the first place. Here are my five favorite ways to reduce your personal plastic footprint. Bring Your Own Bag Billions of plastic shopping bags are used worldwide every year. Shops give them out for free to their customers, but they … Continue reading

Education for Sustainable Development: Key Challenges

The basic aim of 'Education for Sustainable Development' is to nurture an individual who is capable to solve environmental challenges facing the world and to promote the formation of a sustainable society. The first challenge is to have an ethos in schools that openly and enthusiastically supports the development of ESD (Education for Sustainable Development). This is partly down to the curriculum the school follows, but is mainly as a result of the interest and effort shown by senior management in promoting integration and whole school engagement; a critical element being teacher training. It is also down to the expectations … Continue reading

Islamic Perspectives on COP

It is a ripe time to reflect briefly on the upcoming COP from an Islamic perspective. By now everyone is well aware of the cause of severe climatic disturbances which affect us all and the poorest and most vulnerable in particular: sheer greed and unbridled, reckless, consumption. Islam has always provided the keys to a harmonious life in which humans refuse to take more from nature than they need for their sustenance and enjoyment. Islam has repeatedly warned about the imbalances and inequalities that would arise if one were not to follow its recommendations. God created the world in balance … Continue reading

Halobacterium – A Model of Life in the Dead Sea

Biodiversity is one of the Earth’s greatest treasures that spellbound biologists for centuries. It is widely agreed that biodiversity is essential to increase appreciation for the value of biodiversity, since the ecosystems services, through biodiversity, play a fundamental tile in maintaining and enhancing the well being of the world, it is well-known that human health, wealth, security and culture are affected by any changes in the ecosystem. Still, additional research is required to understand the relationship between the ecosystem and biodiversity. Microorganisms can exist even in the most inhospitable habitats with extreme conditions. Despite their size, these unicellular organisms have … Continue reading

الإسلام وحماية البيئة

حماية البيئة هو جانب هام من جوانب الإسلام. بما اننا خلفاء في الأرض، فإنه يقع على عاتقنا كمسلمين العناية بالبيئة، فهناك غرض محدد وراء وجود أنواع مختلفة، سواء كان ذلك نباتات أو حيوانات.  لذا يتوجب على المسلمين التفكير في العلاقة بين الكائنات الحية وبيئتها والحفاظ على التوازن البيئي الذي خلقه الله فحماية البيئة أمر أساسي للمعتقدات الإسلامية، والبشرية لديها مسؤولية لتضمن الحفاظ الآمن للبيئة حماية البيئة والحفاظ على الموارد  المنظور الإسلامي حول حماية البيئة يعكس صورة إيجابية عن الإسلام وكيف يحتضن كل مسألة  تواجه البشر على وجه الأرض.  الموقف الإسلامي تجاه البيئة والحفاظ على الموارد الطبيعية لا يعتمد فقط على … Continue reading

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