Dubai Airport Freezone has reinforced its campaign towards supporting the UAE’s mission for a reduced carbon footprint. In a renewed call for sustainable practices, the region’s foremost business hub has launched new initiatives to educate and engage employees as well as companies operating in the free zone.
As part of this new initiative, effective systems have been developed to recycle paper, metal cans, glasses and other trash within the free zone. There is also a keen focus on low energy consumption and this includes electronic products with low energy light settings and light sensors that help reduce power utilization. Other aspects of the new drive for sustainability include plantation and installation of aerators for all water fixtures resulting in substantial reduction in water consumption.
Adel Ghafan, Senior Executive Director, Engineering Division of the Dubai Airport Freezone says, “Ensuring a sustainable environment is not a reserved duty for the government, but a moral obligation for all. As an organisation with a strong moral conscience, we strive to align our mission with the needs of the country and the global environment at large; therefore the importance of sustainable practices cannot be overemphasised as far as Dubai Airport Freezone is concerned.”
Since its inception in 1996, Dubai Airport Freezone has had sustainable practices at the forefront of its operations. The buildings in the free zone have been built using materials that support low power consumption; for instance glass materials are used to enable well-lit interiors and hence reduce power consumption from electricity lighting. There is also centralized air conditioning that allows the thermostat to be seasonally adjusted, hence optimising the use of energy. In 2004, the management of Dubai Airport Freezone set up the Energy Saving Committee, with a remit to develop efficient systems for the measurement and verification of energy saving programs.
Dubai Airport Freezone was recently ranked number one in the Middle East and North Africa region, in this year’s Middle East Free Zone Rankings, released by Foreign Direct Investment (fDi) Magazine, a premier publication of The Financial Times. The Dubai Airport Freezone has also achieved first place in the Best Transportation Links category. As one of the fastest growing free zones in the world, it is currently home to over 1,450 companies from various industries, including aviation, freight and logistics, IT and telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, engineering, food & beverage, jewellery and cosmetics.
Many international companies are operating in Dubai Airport Freezone such as Boeing, Rolls-Royce, T.N.T., Airbus, Hadid International and National Air Cargo. Among its many awards, the free zone has also received the ‘Sustainable Facility Management Initiative Award’ from the Saudi Arabia Kingdom Expansion Awards.