Dubai Air Quality Strategy

Dubai Municipality launched the Dubai Air Quality Strategy 2017–2021 in collaboration with the General Secretariat of the Executive Council of Dubai. The strategy strives to achieve the national air quality targets outlined in the National Agenda and Dubai Plan 2021. The “Sustainable Environment and Infrastructure” theme of the National Agenda aims to reach an air quality target of 90% clean air days by 2021, while “Smart and Sustainable City” pillar of the Dubai Plan 2021 embeds the concept of environmental sustainability that outlines the efforts to preserve the natural resources, such as air. The Air Quality Strategy is a product of collaboration between government and private sectors to reduce air emissions, which is accompanied with key performance indicators to measure the achievement of the aspired air quality targets. The strategy framework and emission reduction KPIs were developed based on sectorial analysis of current and future scenarios and following best international practices. These KPIs undergo periodic review to ensure their relevance to the overall strategy. The strategy is the cornerstone of the city’s urban planning development and the framework will ensure an innovative-based implementation process that accounts for future foresight and the visions of the Government of Dubai.

KEY STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES

The Air Quality Strategy was developed with a smart, innovative and sustainable approach to improve the ambient air quality in the Emirate of Dubai. It was initiated with an ultimate aim of reducing air emissions and achieving the national air quality target of 90% clean air days by 2021, receiving a substantial support and collaboration from the concerned stakeholders. Additionally, the Strategy is ambitious to support sustainable development and clean energy production within the Emirate, and it aims to promote competitiveness through the strengthening of the national competitive profile aligned with the global goals and directions in the air quality sector. The Strategy also seeks to enhance awareness of Dubai Emirate community in the air quality sector through implementing pioneering methods and tools, suitable for different age groups. Most importantly, the Air Quality Strategy endeavors to cultivate a society of happy people by ensuring clean air and a healthy environment.

Strategy Framework

To ensure the successful implementation of the Dubai Air Quality Strategy, a practical and comprehensive framework was developed to define clear and long-term vision for improving and developing the air quality in Dubai and to achieve the aspired air quality targets. The strategy framework identifies the applicable legislation, criteria pollutants as well as the sectors and strategic stakeholders that have collaborated to ensure robust implementation over the next five years. Further, the framework follows a well-established methodology starting with the preparation phase to setting Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) among stakeholders and finally landing on an action plan that includes a set of policies, initiatives and programs to achieve the national target of clean air days. The framework additionally highlights the major contributions, expected outcomes, and key pollutants for each sector, benchmarks key indicators and various alternatives, and sets timeframes to reduce air emissions.

Methodology & Principles

The Air Quality Strategy was developed following European emission methodologies and best international scientific practices receiving a Certificate of Conferment from the Environmental Research Group of King’s College London. The Strategy followed a detailed quantitative and qualitative assessment of current and future scenarios of air pollutants released from operational and manufacturing activities of all viable sectors in Dubai and has considered formulating sector comprehensive plans, policies, programs and initiatives to achieve its goals. Furthermore, the Air Quality Strategy was developed based on five smart principles fulfilling the current needs and to face future air quality challenges within the Emirate of Dubai. For instance, the Strategy holds specific and clear goals, aligned with the national policies and directives and at par with international benchmarks. It is motivated to achieve sustainable development in collaboration with the key stakeholders and, as previously highlighted, combined with a set of measurable and realistic KPIs that suit the vast extents of the operations of the different sectors involved. The Strategy also features dynamic and specific timelines catered for implementing effective and innovative action plans up to the year 2021.