Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 03 March 2019: Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Almheiri, UAE Minister of State for Food Security, became the first Government official at a Minister level to feature as a guest lecturer at NYU Abu Dhabi’s (NYUAD) Water-Energy-Food Nexus course.
The three-week course explored the interconnectedness of water, energy, and food supplies, highlighting water’s fundamental role in agriculture and the entire agro-food supply chain, as well as energy’s role in the production and distribution of water and food. It included lectures by several subject-matter experts, as well as field trips to sites in the UAE to learn first-hand the intricacies of political, cultural, and technological drivers on food, water, and energy systems.
“As the effects of climate change and overpopulation become more prominent, sustainability comes to the fore as a major concern for authorities around the world,” H.E. Almheiri said. “The UAE’s climate makes it exceptionally critical for us to develop holistic and ambitious plans to ensure our food security in the foreseeable future and beyond. We are blessed to have forward-thinking leaders who have directed all UAE Government entities – as well as private companies, academic institutions, and NGOs, among other stakeholders – to compute any action we take with that future in mind.”
“I am delighted to have had the chance to interact with students here at NYU Abu Dhabi as a guest instructor,” H.E. added. “Students – and the youth, in general – are a fundamental component of all our plans for food security. To ensure better food management and security in the future, we must train the food security experts of tomorrow starting now. We must promote a responsible community starting today. Therefore, the Office of Food Security prioritises engaging the youth in all of its activities, programmes, and initiatives.”
As guest instructor, the Minister of State for Food Security delivered four lectures, the first of which took place on January 13, 2019, and boarded the topic of “Water for Food”, aiming to identify strategies to adapt agriculture to global warming. Similarly, the second lecture on January 14 delved into the topic of “Water for Energy”, while the third talk (January 15) bore the title “Food as Energy” and included field trips to the Future of Energy Summit 2019, part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week that was held at Masdar. The fourth and final lecture was held on January 17 and revolved around the interrelated topics of energy, water, and food security.