Green Economy in Egypt: Challenges and Opportunities Event Activity
Sherif Fouad, the official spokesman and media advisor in Zewail City, inaugurated the plenary session of the first day of the green economy workshop in Egypt, highlighting the importance of this event, which represents a model for a purposeful scientific, practical and applied dialogue forum between the parties concerned with the green economy to discuss the most important challenges and opportunities facing this The nascent sector and ways to overcome it, encourage and develop Egyptian initiatives in this field at the local, regional and global levels.
Professor Dr. Mahmoud Abd Rabou, Acting CEO of Zewail City for Science, Technology and Innovation, explained at the beginning of the episode what Zewail City had accomplished in the previous period and its role in reaching the highest international accreditation standards ABET and its support for Egypt’s talented and distinguished students (future scientists) to raise their abilities and skills through: Professors and researchers from Major international universities and non-traditional interdisciplinary programs within a creative applied research environment (modern laboratories, interactive skills, competitions, etc.). To be graduates who are able to keep pace with local and global challenges with global standards that enable them to keep pace with the global work environment.
His Excellency praised the role of the various components of the city represented in the university and research centers and the role of the Valley of Science and Technology to be a means of communication and work to transfer all produced research, science and knowledge to the Egyptian society and industry and contribute to the establishment of companies in science and technology to support the knowledge economy. Believing in activating the link between applied and academic sciences.
His Excellency emphasized the activities of Zewail City to support and activate Egypt's strategic vision as part of giving back to the Egyptian state and society. He stressed that this workshop is the beginning of a series of workshops and conferences in the near future. It is honored that Zewail City will be a forum and platform for dialogue between representatives of the state and ministries working in the field - and industry men And investment - universities, research centers, researchers and academics in order to contribute to achieving the Egyptian state’s vision for sustainable development 2030.
Mr. Hossam Badr El-Din, representative of the El-Komy Group, explained the group's interest in the role of scientific research in this field. His Excellency indicated that El-Komy Group of Companies has been keen, since its inception, to invest and cooperate in the fields of knowledge economy, research and development, believing that it is the only way in light of the development and globalization that we live in today.
The group has adopted many researches and researchers in the fields of green economy and unconventional and integrated products, and has succeeded in developing many of these research and products and extracting them from the corridors of laboratories and laboratory success to applied and industrial success to economic feasibility.
This episode represents one of the fruits of this cooperation in order to link universities with the industry to meet the challenges and requirements of the industry in line with the approach and vision of the El Komy Group. His Excellency stated that the group, in partnership with Zewail University, aspires to build a model for a purposeful scientific, practical and applied dialogue forum between the parties concerned with the green economy to discuss the most important challenges and opportunities facing this nascent sector and ways to overcome it and encourage and develop Egyptian initiatives in this field at the local, regional and global levels to open up The results of this seminar are areas and opportunities for investment to accelerate the implementation of green economy concepts in Egypt.
Dr. Hossam Darwish, President of the African-Asian Union, also spoke about the importance of the green economy and what the country is striving to achieve. He stressed that green investment is one of the new models of rapid economic development, which is based mainly on good knowledge of the environment, the most important of which is to address the mutual relationship between human economies. and the natural ecosystem.
He also added that one of the most important goals that the union seeks is to elevate people and improve livelihoods, and he stated that the shift towards increasing investments in green economies in various countries of the year and in Egypt in particular has become an imperative as it is a roadmap towards achieving sustainable development goals and all investors must Be wary of companies calling themselves green for branding purposes without keeping their promises. Through our participation in this wonderful event, we look forward to the attention of all parties and sectors to the importance of the green economy and the importance of investment in this field, especially that the return on green investment is high and high, and to the consolidation of cooperation with various official and governmental bodies, the public and private sectors, individuals and participation to advance the wheel of sustainable development in Egypt through Benefit from local and international experiences and expertise.
And in the presence of Her Excellency the Minister Plenipotentiary Ambassador/ Nada Al-Ajezi, Director of the Department of Sustainable Development and International Cooperation, the League of Arab States, made it clear that the League had expressed in more than one situation its adherence to the 2030 sustainable development plan and announced early on the initiation of the establishment of an Arab committee for sustainable development and activation of the indicative framework for the implementation of the plan Sustainable Development 2030. It also focuses on integrating the efforts of the General Secretariat with its specialized organizations, as well as increasing cooperation with the United Nations and its specialized agencies and regional and international organizations in order to keep pace with Arab efforts with the international framework.
Her Excellency also confirmed that the General Secretariat had made a lot of effort and used the services of many Arab and international experts to establish the Arab Committee for Sustainable Development. Many meetings were held at the level of sectors and departments of the General Secretariat, as well as with the contact points of the Arab countries concerned with this file. Rather, these meetings included all The regional and international partners concerned with sustainable development in the Arab region, and it has also worked on developing an Arab framework of indicators that suits the nature of the region, and contributes to monitoring progress in implementing the sustainable development goals, as well as its partnerships with various regional and international actors in order to enhance the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in the Arab countries. It is necessary for the banking sector to participate in the areas of sustainable financing and to move from financing the “brown economy” harmful to the environment to the “green economy” that preserves the environment, and redirecting financial flows towards more sustainable and responsible investments.
The workshop witnessed the participation of a large number of representatives of the relevant ministries and various bodies, such as the New Urban Communities Authority under the supervision of Eng. Abdel Muttalib Mamdouh Emara, the Vice President of the Authority for the Development Sector and Cities Development and the supervisor of the Sustainable Cities and Renewable Energy Unit, in this episode: Mr. Eng. Jamal Talaat - Assistant Vice President of the Authority for the Development and Urban Development Sector and Head of the Sustainable Cities and Renewable Energy Unit - and Dr. Donia Rabie - Executive Director of the Central Unit for Sustainable Cities and Renewable Energy. And Dr. Ahmed Emara, legal advisor at the New Urban Communities Authority and member of the Sustainable Cities and Renewable Energy Unit.
Where Eng. Gamal Talaat gave a presentation entitled: "New Cities towards a Sustainable Green Economy", during which he explained all the projects implemented by the Urban Communities Authority in general, highlighting the projects of the central unit for sustainable cities in particular, in terms of: urban realignment efforts for new cities, and cities green, urban re-planning, solar power plant construction efforts, bike paths, and active mobility. He also reviewed the efforts aimed at reducing the energy used within the facilities, especially in the "Housing for All Egyptians" project through the use of new types of paints, floors and insulation materials, and taking into account the trends of window openings..
And in the presence of Dr. Walid Darwish, Advisor to the Minister of Trade and Industry for environmental policies, he confirmed that the ministry paid great attention to relying on clean and renewable energy sources in line with the Egyptian state’s trend towards green transformation, addressing the harmful effects of climate change and preserving natural resources within the framework of sustainable development goals as well as Egypt’s Vision 2030. As a national agenda to achieve sustainable development goals in various fields, noting that within the framework of the directives of Mrs. Nevin Gamea, Minister of Trade and Industry, the ministry has made a number of efforts in this field, including the implementation of the Egyptian program to raise the efficiency of industrial engines to support the transformation of the industrial sector into improving the efficiency of use Energy and switching to high-efficiency engines in energy consumption, and a program for the uses of solar energy in heating in industry with the aim of spreading solar thermal energy technology in water heating processes in industry.
Darwish added that the ministry’s efforts also included the implementation of the “Egypt-PV” solar cell systems project to remove the obstacles that prevent the increase in energy generation through small, decentralized and grid-connected photovoltaic systems implemented by small and medium-sized companies, as well as in residential buildings.
In addition to implementing the Go Green initiative to replace old cars with clean energy cars, pointing out that the implementation of the European Green Deal and the requirements of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and its impact on the structure of Egyptian exports to the European Union is currently being studied through the gradual shift from the use of fossil fuels in industry to the use of fossil fuels in industry. clean energy sources.
Dr. Moamen Al-Sharqawi, Head of the Central Department for Water Orientation, representing the Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources, attended the workshop, where he explained the plan of the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation and its strategy until 2050 in a framework consistent with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030 and the sixth goal of it related to water, in addition to other related goals. water from those targets. It is also consistent with the economic, social and environmental objectives of Egypt's vision for sustainable development 2030, which includes the transformation strategy for green development and the green economy and its focus on the water sector strategy.
The ministry translated its strategy into the National Water Resources Plan 2017-2037, which in turn was reflected in the national projects implemented by the ministry, including the rehabilitation of canals and watering canals, the transformation of modern irrigation, smart irrigation applications, agricultural wastewater reuse projects to serve the objectives of agricultural expansion, flood protection and harvesting projects, beach protection projects and rational use. For groundwater, development of control facilities, large arches and lifting stations, development of monitoring and follow-up systems, forecasting systems, dealing with climate changes and other projects.
The ministry targeted the application of sustainability methodologies in all its projects from using renewable energy and protecting water resources from pollution in a way that serves the transformation requirements for green development and the green economy and opens many investment opportunities and creates many job opportunities associated with it.
The Sustainable Development Unit at the Ministry of Planning, Follow-up and Administrative Reform also participated in the workshop, where Professor Sherif Daoud, Vice President of the Unit, indicated that the state's general budget for 2021 has allocated 15% to green projects targeting the sectors of electricity, transport and population, and that the percentage will reach to 30% in 2022, and this is in the process of increasing the percentage in 2025 until it reaches 50%. These sectors also include the use of renewable energy in order to achieve the goals of sustainability, within the framework of activating the vision and strategy of the state.
Dr. Ahmed Gaber (Professor and Doctor of Chemical Engineering at Cairo University and owner of Chemonics Company) gave an introductory lecture on the green economy to standardize difination to the attendees. The lecture began by presenting the principles and concepts that are aggregated under the umbrella of the principle of green economy, which includes both the bio-economy and the circular economy.
After defining the basic concepts, Dr. Ahmed Jaber explained and clarified the definition of each term separately and then made an extensive comparison between the three concepts from the two perspectives: environmental and social.
In the second section of the lecture, Dr. Ahmed Jaber moved to presenting theories, concepts, trends and assessment tools for the green economy, with an explanation of the difference between environmental economics and ecological economics, and summarizing the environmental, economic and social benefits from the application of the green economy.
Dr. Ahmed Jaber concluded the lecture by nominating three important reports for a deeper and more accurate understanding of the principle of the green economy, and they were as follows: the report of the United Nations Environment Program “Towards a green economy” and the World Bank report “inclusive green growth” in addition to the report of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development “Towards green growth.”
The workshop touched on investment opportunities in the various sectors of the green economy and ways to support the green trend in the economy and support the establishment of start-up companies by highlighting four areas:
Bio-agriculture, ecotourism, bio-economy and products based on it, and renewable energy.
Dr. Mostafa Moussa, Director of the Center for Sustainable Development and Head of the Valley of Science and Technology in Zewail City moderated the ecotourism session and began with the challenges facing ecotourism in Egypt. The roundtable discussion on ecotourism included representatives of research centers, educational institutes, protection agencies, development and environment consultants, businessmen and consultants Marketing. The session covered the topic of ecotourism and the definitions used interchangeably, the main principles of ecotourism, eco-friendly destinations in Egypt, the value chain of the tourism industry, the effects of the linear model, why and how is it circular? Possible periodic procedures to consider when designing eco-friendly accommodation. This opened the door for the participants to exchange their views regarding the ecotourism industry in Egypt.
The session on renewable energy in the green economy included a large presence of government agencies, university professors, private companies, consulting offices and civil society organizations. The dialogue was moderated by Dr. Amjad El-Deeb, Director of the Renewable Energy Engineering Program in Zewail City, where the session dealt with defining the main points of the session, which are the importance of renewable energy and its relationship to the green economy and the most important modern technologies that are used to increase renewable energy projects to contribute to Egypt’s Vision 2030.
The session of biological agriculture was moderated by Dr. Khaled Ghanem, Head of the Department of Environment and Biodynamic Agriculture at Al-Azhar University, by talking about the concept of ecological or sustainable agriculture, and it can be defined as the art of managing the local resources available in agriculture so that it is based on the introduction of ideas related to the environment and society and does not focus only on production but on the sustainability of the system environmental too. The second concept is the green economy, which is a type of economy that leads, through the sustainability of its coexistence, to reducing the environmental risks that already exist and are expected to occur. At the level of international development, it can be defined as an economy directed towards increasing the growth of the individual and increasing his well-being while preserving the surrounding environment.
As for the bio-economy session and the products based on it, the session was moderated by Dr. Tamer Samir, Director of the Environmental Engineering Program at the University of Science and Technology in Zewail City. He identified the main points of the session, which are the definition of the bio-economy and the products based on it, examples available in the Egyptian market / and the proposed incentives to push towards the bio-economy Within the framework of the green economy of Egypt's vision 2030. The dynamic economy was defined as the economy that depends at its core on the production of sustainable products.
The second day of the workshop came with the results and recommendations of the four seminars, where Dr. Mostafa Badawy, Director of the Center for Sustainable Development and President of the Valley of Science and Technology, presented the general recommendations that pave the way for the growth of the green economy in Egypt, which are represented in:
- The necessity of clarifying the concepts of the green economy and the circular economy to apply them in various fields
- Exploiting the global and local trend in the field of green economy and the circular economy to create new job opportunities for young people in line with the global trend and with the state’s vision in 2030 and 2050
- Linking the concerned parties in the field of green economy and linking each of the state ministries, the government sector and the academic sector with the orientations of the private sector
The discussion coordinators from the graduates of the Environmental Engineering and Renewable Energy Engineering Program at the University of Science and Technology also presented specialized recommendations for the workshops, which included the most prominent findings of the effective discussions between researchers, academics, industrialists, investors and representatives of government agencies who participated in the various workshops
At the conclusion of the activities of the second day, Mr. Hatem El-Koumi, owner of El-Koumi Group for Sustainable Development, explained the group’s interest in the role of scientific research in this field. His Excellency indicated that El-Koumi Group of Companies has been keen since its inception to invest and cooperate in the fields of knowledge economy, research and development, believing that it is the only way in light of development and globalization that We live today, which raises the competitiveness of the Egyptian economy and helps create high quality and sustainable job opportunities. He stressed the need to stimulate the private sector to work on the green economy and the need for young people to inspect what major companies need and work to transform those needs into opportunities that can be acquired and to establish companies based on them. Professor Hatem El-Koumi concluded his recommendations that the recommendations of this conference should be converted into an application in order to bear fruit.