The Environmental Sector in the UAE: Accelerating green innovation in the Middle East

The UAE government has been proactively addressing growing environmental challenges and is attempting to diversify the oil-led economy to non-oil sectors. In line with its aim to revise its energy strategy and achieve climate neutrality by 2050, there are many advancements in initiatives, investments, and innovations in the environmental sector of the UAE.

The Environmental Sector in the UAE


UAE has positioned itself to strategically utilize financial resources generated from its oil-based industry to fuel growth and support the development of a sustainable “green” national economy. The government has laid out a framework to realize its ambitious goals such as slashing the consumption efficiency of individuals and corporations by 40% and 70% reduction in carbon footprint by 2050. Over the course of the next three decades, the government plans a clean energy investment worth Dh600 billion ($163.37bn) in the country to further its plan for a green economy.


Firms in UAE are pursuing green financing as a source for receiving funds. UAE, the first country in the Middle East to have entered the green bond market, joined the list of 10 new entrants alongside countries like Singapore and Switzerland back in 2017. With both Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and Dubai Financial Market being members of the United Nations Sustainable Stock Exchange Initiative, a platform for laying out guidelines for corporate transparency on ESG and credible green bond release, investors are positioned to make informed decisions and create a more robust funding environment. The total value of the green bonds and loan market of UAE is currently valued at $17 trillion. National Central Cooling Company, Tabreed which owns and operates 86 district cooling plants across the GCC laid out its green financing framework intending to attract green equity funds to invest in its business.


A plethora of innovations have already been seen in the country and several others are underway, given the robust growth infrastructure to support green innovation. Etihad Airlines secured finance from First Abu Dhabi Bank in 2019, becoming the first commercial airline globally, to have secured finance based on verified compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Several startups are working in verticals of circular economy, waste management, and resource management and have achieved substantial levels of recognition from investors. For instance, recently, waste management startup Nadeera known for its first-of-a-kind trash-for-cash system in the MENA region received a $100,000 grant from PepsiCo’s regional accelerator program.

The Environmental Sector in the UAE

The environmental sector of the UAE is seeing major advancements and it is set to shape the pace of green innovation in the region in the years to come. Entrepreneurs, businesses, and brands should readily strategize to utilize the booming market to their advantage. The country’s government and businesses are optimistic that positing UAE as a green innovation hub will bring large scale investments and business opportunities. RAG Business Group has deep experience in launching entrepreneurs (company formation, market research, distributor search, etc.) in the United Arab Emirates. Contact us at Toll Free Number 800724249 or write to: to know how we can support you in launching a new company in UAE.

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