How do countries in the Middle East deal with the challenges of climate change? Activists and experts from the region share their thoughts on the challenges of putting climate change on the political agenda. They also discuss the climate change policies and the energy transition in the Middle East.
The Day of the Middle East is an annual program organized by D66 International. This program aims to look beyond what the media headlines tell about the region. Experts with strong ties to the region engage in conversation and discuss the most pressing issues.
This seventh edition focuses on climate change. This is especially important because the consequences of climate change are exceptionally far-reaching in the Middle East. From Amman to Algeria, water scarcity, rising temperatures and desertification pose challenges for the cities and the people within the region. Activists and experts from the Middle East and North Africa address these challenges and share their thoughts on the possible solutions.
This program consists of two sessions; a plenary and two breakout sessions. In the first session, the speakers discuss how they address climate change amid plenty of other prominent issues in the region. The breakout sessions focus on the climate diplomacy and the energy transition. Drinks and appetizers will be served in between the two sessions.
About the speakers
The plenary session:
- Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy from the Netherlands is a former Member of the European Parliament (MEP). During his 10-year mandate as an MEP focused on subjects such as sustainability, climate, environment, energy and the circular economy. He is currently member of the Advisory Committee on Stikstofproblematiek (Nitrogen Pollution). Gerben-Jan was proclaimed the Greenest Politician of the year by Natuurmonumenten (Nature Monuments) in 2017. He offers words of welcome at the beginning of this event.
- Lama Elhatow from Egypt is an environmental engineer based in Cairo. She is co-founder of the Water Insitute of the Nile. This is a think tank that looks for an alternative space to deal with water issues surrounding the Nile Basin. Elhatow is a Ph.D. Candidate in Delft University of Technology (TU Delft). She is doing her research dissertation on Water Resource Management under Climate Change in Egypt.
- Dalit Wolf Golan from Israel is the Deputy Director and Regional Development Director for EcoPeace Middle East.
- Marijn Bosman is an active member of the Liberal International Climate Justice Committee. She works for the Ministry of Economics and Climate. Bosman is also a member and vice-chairman of the D66 group in the municiality council in Amsterdam. Bosman is the moderator of plenary session of this program.
The breakout sessions:
- Mahmoud Driaat is the Education Projects Manager for EcoPeace Middle East, in the Palestine Office. Driaat is currently leading two educational projects for EcoPeace Middle East. These projects focus on building young cadre of green entrepreneurs and water diplomats among youth from the Middle East countries. He is the President of the Palestinian Youth Committee (YC) for the Palestinian Water Authority (PWA).
- Nawar Sabeeish from Jordan is the Environmental Education Officer for EcoPeace Middle East. She leads the educational program of the organisation for school students, teachers, young professionals and university students.
- Christian Henderson is assistent professsor at the University of Leiden. He is specialised in the political economy of the Middle East. His latest research project is on the consequences of the green energy shift in the the Middel East and North Africa.
- Hamdi Hached is an environmental engineer from Tunisia. He currently works as Project Coordinator for the Friedrich-Naumann Foundation for Freedom. He is involved in environmental consulting, as well as civil society projects in Tunisia and Libya. Hached is also the General Manager for Gaia Environmental Consulting in Tunis.
- Omar Shoshan from Jordan is an environmental advocate and Media activist. He has worked for multiple national and international organizations specialized in environment and media. Shoshan is currently the Chairman of the Jordan Environmental Union. This organisation seeks to participate in the formulation of national environmental policies and legislation, enhance and institutionalise environmental work in Jordan
Photo: Merzouga in Marocco