Arab efforts seeking innovative solutions for Future of Sustainability in the Arab Region

IUCN marks World Environment Day by holding a regional debate on Future of Sustainability in the Arab Region.

In light of the global crisis in water, food and energy, Arab experts from governments, civil society, youth and private sector have gathered in Alexandria to discuss the issue of Future of Sustainability in the Arab Region. In this regional debate entitled “Future of Sustainability Debate in the Arab Region: Voices from the South”, special focus was given to the innovative solutions that are urgently needed to control the economical, environmental and social challenges facing the region today.

Participants during the Future of Sustainability Debate in Alexandria Library Photo: Rania Faouri

On the occasion of the World Environment day, IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) through its West Asia/Middle East (WAME) Regional Office has taken this important step by organizing this regional debate, which was hosted by Alexandria Library and funded by Ford Foundation.


The time has come to address the issue of energy and water … The responsibility towards future generations and the protection of human habitat is absolutely essential, but unattainable without supra-national thinking”  HRH Prince Hassan Bin Talal said in his visual speech on DVD during the debate.   


The idea of this debate was born in 2006, through the IUCN global meeting on Future of Sustainability that was held to adopt a vision for the future of sustainability in participation of global thinkers. This debate aims at enriching and deepening the discussion on sustainable development, especially in light of the food, water and energy crisis.Dr. Odeh Al-Jayyousi, IUCN West Asia/Middle East Regional Director said during the debate.


Participants also listened to the innovative ideas of Prof Ismail Serageldin, Director of Alexandria Library. “Greening National Accounts does not yield many changes on the income side, but sends strong policy signals about saving and investment.” Prof Ismail Serageldin said. He presented the new definition of sustainability as opportunity saying; “Sustainability is giving future generations as many opportunities as, if not more than, we have had ourselves … this means giving future generations as much or more capital per person than we have today.


IUCN hopes that by raising the issue of sustainability from a regional view, the Arab wisdom will be reinforced and elevated to the international level. This is considered a first step towards developing one vision agreed upon by governments, policy makers, civil society and private sector.


IUCN will highlight this Arab regional vision on sustainability by sharing the outcomes of this debate during the World Conservation Congress that is organized by IUCN during October 4-15 in Barcelona.



  • For more information please contact Ms Rania Faouri, IUCN WAME Communications Officer at Tel: 00962 6 5546912/3/4  Mobile: 00962 6 5546915

About IUCN

IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges by supporting scientific research; managing field projects all over the world; and bringing governments, NGOs, the UN, international conventions and companies together to develop policy, laws and best practice.

IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental network. IUCN is a democratic union with more than 1,000 government and NGO member organizations, and some 10,000 volunteer scientists in more than 150 countries. IUCN’s work is supported by 1,100 professional staff in 62 countries and hundreds of partners in public, NGO and private sectors around the world.


About Bibliotheca Alexandrina

The Bibliotheca Alexandrina, the New Library of Alexandria, is dedicated to recapturing the spirit of the original, ancient Library.  It aims to be a center of excellence in the production and dissemination of knowledge and to be a place of dialogue, learning and understanding between cultures and peoples.  A great Egyptian Library with international dimensions, it aspires to be the world’s window on Egypt, Egypt’s window on the world, a leading institution of the digital age, and, above all, a centre for learning, tolerance, dialogue and understanding.

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