International Day for Biological Diversity
The United Arab Emirates University celebrates with the world on the twenty-second day of May every year the International Day for Biological Diversity. It comes this year 2021 under “We are part of the solution”. The United Arab Emirates University affirms its pioneering, scientific and research role in supporting national efforts in promoting biodiversity. For a better life for the local community by achieving sustainability. The UAE University, through its various roles and academic programs, has contributed to providing innovative and research solutions that support biodiversity.
Prof. Ahmed Ali Murad - Associate Provost for Research emphasized on the importance of preserving biological diversity as it is one of the most important practical solutions to the challenges of sustainable development, and it is paving way to achieve the United Nations goals of sustainable development. He added achieving biological diversity is one of the important necessities that help in obtaining basic health care.
Therefore, preserving and enhancing this diversity is a shared societal responsibility, as disturbing the environmental balance is a threat to all and has negative effects on achieving the sustainable development goals.
There is increasing global interest in seeing biodiversity as a global wealth of high value for future generations. Prof. Ahmed Murad explained that the UAE University, since its inception, has focused on issues related to the environment, including biodiversity, through high-level academic programs. The university has been offering a Master of Environmental Sciences since 1994, which plays a major role in providing a deeper understanding of biodiversity challenges through master's theses provided by students. The results of these studies also contribute to providing practical solutions. The academic programs and their diversity at the university contribute to building a generation of Emirati youth who are able to provide scientific solutions armed with scientific and research skills to play a role in promoting biodiversity in the country.
The university’s role includes contributing to the creation and building of knowledge in topics related to biological diversity through scientific research, and the promotion of scientific research in topics related to biodiversity that resulted in the production of 548 research papers published in reputable and highly rated journals from 2015-2021, which is equivalent to 8 % of all scientific papers published in that period. This highlights the high quality of the research outputs of researchers from the faculty and students of the United Arab Emirates University. It is part of the university's vision to support national efforts and priorities. The Khalifa Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology also supports innovative research to achieve sustainable biodiversity and support national visions and efforts.
The Associate Provost for Research explained that the UAE University's research efforts are continuing, as faculty members and researchers are currently conducting 29 academic research related to the environment and biological diversity, which would contribute to building a sustainable research system that provides society with innovative solutions to environmental challenges.
These studies focus on various topics, including: "Conserving fish in the Arabian Gulf using the genomic method", "desert plants and diversity and resilience of their communities in the changing dry environment", and "protecting the wild animal habitation in the UAE".
Researchers from the United Arab Emirates University have previously registered four patents on topics related to biodiversity, including: "water plant sensor", "insulating and biodegradable materials", "production of anti-rust material from palm waste", and " production of paper from sand.
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