UAE’s commitment towards UN Sustainable Development Goals

Umar, Tariq, Egbu, Charles, Ofori, George, Honnurvali, Mohamed Shaik, Saidani, Messaoud, Shibani, Abdussalam, Opoku, Alex, Gupta, Naren and Goh, Keng (2020) UAE’s commitment towards UN Sustainable Development Goals. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Engineering Sustainability, 173(7), pp. 325-343. ISSN (print) 1478-4629


In 2015, the UN member countries, on mutual understanding, identified 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to be achieved by 2030. According to several reports, some countries are reflecting good progress, but overall, no country is on track towards achieving all the UN SDGs. This paper aims to show the progress and commitment of the UAE towards UN SDGs. A qualitative research approach using a systematic literature review complying with Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses and a semi-structured interview was adapted to achieve the aim of this research. The results reflect that the Emirates has achieved only one goal. Most of the remaining goals are not on track to be achieved by 2030. In fact, some of the goals related to energy and climate are becoming riskier. The country under its different initiatives aims to invest a total of US$163·35 billion in different projects that target to achieve 50% clean energy by 2050. It is, however, not clear from the government strategy how these targets will be achieved. Similarly, the government needs to ensure a close relationship between organisations so that the action of one unit does not derail the plans of other organisations.

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