Abu Dhabi and most of the United Arab of Emirates (UAE) are situated in the near coastal areas in the Middle Eastern region. Many infrastractures are strategically built within the area and most of the economy of the country are based on the different activities of the establishments built there (Dougherty 14). Unfortunately, the coastal areas are one of the most affected regions in the current phenomenon of climate change. This is because climate change brought about several adverse effects in the coastal regions, particularly in the rise of sea water level and temperature, as well as the constantly changing patterns of weather, which might induce severe drought or a deadly typhoon (Dougherty 14). Considering these risks, the structures, establishments and the whole economy of Abu Dhabi are all subjected under the threat of the extreme weather condition. As such, a possibile economic instability might occur in the upcoming years.
In order to solve and minimize the adverse effects of climate change in Abu Dhabi, the public must understand the current environmental situations and how the world responds to the need to protect the environment and mitigate the effects brought about by climate change. 11 years ago, UAE conformed with the provisions of Kyoto Protocol, which is highly unusual since the country is a major producer of oil, while the Kyoto Protocol aimed to minimize carbon footprint emission (Embassy of the United Arab Emirates). Because of the support coming from a country with a high potential disadvantage, it is only implied that UAE does not only think about is own economic gains, but also seeks for the welfare of the environment.
However, though the actions of the UAE government showed support for environmental protection, it can be clearly seen that there will be impacts on the country’s economy, particularly on the capital city of Abu Dhabi, where major industries are established. This implies that in both alternatives, the economy of Abu Dhabi will likely be influenced due to effects of climate change or due to the restrictions imposed by the governing environmental laws and agreement.
Direct Effects of Climate Change. Direct effects would mean that the source came from the adverse effects of climate change. This include the sea level rise, increase in temperature and humidity, and other related impacts.
Given that the climate change retains its intensity for few more years, the water demand and supply of Abu Dhabi is most likely to be affected. According to Dougherty, due to the increasing temperature of the world, the projected rainfall will likely decrease, thus the water resources will most probably diminish (96). Also, the rainfall has no distinct pattern of occurrence and because of this, there will be significant differences in the prediction on the amount of rainfall that will occur in the region (96). As a result, the agricultural, irrigation, forestry, and facility water allocation are most likely to be adjusted, because they comprised a huge portion of the total water demand of Abu Dhabi (119). Regardless of the population growth, it can be inferred that there will be an increase in demand but with a decrease in supply. However, due to the reduction of allocated water in the irrigation, agriculture, and forestry, the daily water supply will meet the demands of the people in the future adequately (121), as long as the use of technology will make way to tap the groundwater supplies, which is considered as another significant option.
Effects of Environmental Negotiations. On the other hand, one of the main concerns of environmental agreements is the availability and impacts of energy. In the recent Paris convention, it has been agreed upon by the participating countries that the emission of greenhouse gases should be monitored and its adverse effects should be mitigated (Oberthur, La Viña 9). This only implies that industries which contributed largely to carbon emissions are most likely to be affected. According to the International Energy Agency, Middle Eastern countries contribute to the current 25 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, and it will become 30 percent supposed that their activities are not regulated (63). This means that Abu Dhabi will have to adjust with the new provisions, which will result to a significant decrease in emission activity in the country. Fortunately, this will not significantly affect the economy of the country, as the government had already expanded the policy of using “low-carbon technology and investing in renewable energy and nuclear power” (Embassy of the United Arab Emirates).
Another proposed solution which concerns the European Union is the adaptation of the Climate and Energy Package. The package includes several policies which aim to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions starting in the year 2020, when the European Union Emission Trading System will expire (Meyer-Ohlendorf, Duwe, Umpfenbach, & McFarland 1). The advantage of this package is that the economy sector will become aware earlier of the policy and the industries will be given sufficient time to adjust with it. Furthermore, this will enable the market to fully support the program, without them being negatively affected (Meyer-Ohlendorf, Duwe, Umpfenbach, & McFarland 6). This will also encourage industries to tap more on other energy sources, prefereably the renewable ones for the purpose that it will help promote the use of alternative energy especially in the future, when fossil fuels are nearly exhausted (Meyer-Ohlendorf, Duwe, Umpfenbach, & McFarland 10). For Abu Dhabi, this will not be a significant threat in its economy because there will be enough time for adjustments. In actuality, Abu Dhabi has already made adoptions of the greenhouse gas emission policies, and as stated earlier, the industries there are now expanding on the renewable and nuclear energy, which might become a successful venture in the energy sector in the future.
Climate change brought about adverse effects on Abu Dhabi’s economy in different sectors such as the water supply and demand. As in the energy sector, there is no need for the industries to be threatened because the conventions and recent agreements have prepared them for the significant changes that will be made in the future, especially the Middle Eastern countries where the large fossil fuel reserves are found. In other words, these policies helped to reduce the problem of Abu Dhabi and the country will be able to work on other problems such as the possible shortage of water supply in the future.
Dougherty, William. Climate Change: Impacts, Vulnerability and Adaptation. Abu Dhabi: Environmental Agency, 2009. Print.
"Energy and Climate Change." Embassy of the United Arab Emirates. 2015. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.
International Energy Agency. Energy and Climate Change. Paris: International Energy Agency, 2015. Print.
Meyer-Ohlendorf, Nils, Matthias Duwe, Katharina Umpfenbach, and Keighley McFarland. "The Next EU Climate and Energy Package – EU Climate Policies after 2020." Ecologic (2014): 1-105. Print.
Oberthur, Sebastian, Antonio La Vina, and Jennifer Morgan. "Getting Specific on the 2015 Climate Change Agreement: Suggestions for the Legal Text with an Explanatory Memorandum." ACT (2015): 1-60. Print.
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Investment and Financial Flows to Address Climate Change: An Update. 2009. Print.