EmiratesGBC Newsletter

A Letter from the Chairman …

EGBC Chairman

A Letter from the Chairman…

Dear Members and Industry Supporters,

Last month exemplified EmiratesGBC’s steadfast strides toward supporting the UAE to be a global leader in sustainable urban development by launching the UAE’s first ‘Nearly Zero Energy Buildings’ Report.  Announced at an event supported by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce on September 27th, the analytical report is a significant milestone for the UAE green building movement as we promote the next stage in the green building journey towards a net positive built environment.  The nZEB Report is now accessible on the EmiratesGBC website for download.

September also marked EmiratesGBC hosting a number of UAE developers at our first bespoke meetup event as part of EmiratesGBC’s Developers Forum initiative.  Held under the theme ‘A Business Case for Green Buildings in the UAE,’ the Roundtable brought together several leading developers in the UAE to further the engagement of developers in sustainable development and green building best practices.  Feedback has been positive, and we look forward to continuing the dialogue with UAE developers.

Looking ahead, the second flagship event of the year is on the horizon.  The 6thAnnual EmiratesGBC Congress, being held under the patronage of the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment will focus on the theme ‘Urban Energy: Powering Smart, Happy & Efficient Cities’. There is still time to sponsor this industry-leading event taking place in Dubai on October 17-18.  Special thanks to EmiratesGBC Corporate Members Majid Al Futtaim and Akzo Nobel who have already committed their support of the Congress.

Last but not least, I urge you to take the time to visit the EmiratesGBC website for more details on our programs and events in order to find out how you can become actively engaged in driving the green building movement in the UAE.


Saeed Al Abbar

EmiratesGBC News and Updates

EmiratesGBC Congress 2017: Last Chance to Register for this Not to be Missed Event

Held under the theme “Urban Energy: Powering Smart, Happy and Efficient Cities”, the 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress is taking place on October 17th and 18th at the Pullman Dubai Creek City Centre.  It’s just around the corner and will be taking place in just a few short weeks. Registration for the 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress is now open, and we are expecting a sold out event.,We urge you to register early to avoid disappointment.

The 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress will be taking place on October 17 & 18 in Dubai at Pullman Dubai Creek City Center on Day 1 and City Center Me’aisem on Day 2.

A Call to Sponsors

There are still prime opportunities to support this flagship event, and we encourage you to consider the available Congress sponsorship packages.  For more information on how to get involved, please contact us at engagement@emiratesgbc.org.

Thank you to our Principal Sponsor AkzoNobel and Venue Sponsor Majid Al Futtaim for their early support of this pivotal event.






Another Succesful WELL Training

On September 11th, 2017, EmiratesGBC offered members the second WELL training for 2017. As with the first session offered back in May the training was facilitated by, Kate Rube, WELL Faculty, Vice President, Technical Solutions, IWBI. Rania Missoumi, Principal at Port Partners assisted in facilitating a portion of the session.

When asked about the expected penetration of the WELL building standard in the UAE, Rube said, “Dubai and the UAE has always been at the forefront of innovation and in sustainability, which is evidenced by their existing green building standards. This is an opportunity to go even further and to be a global leader in people-centred real estate. By placing people at the heart of design, construction, operations, and development decisions, we have the ability to add value to real estate assets, generate savings in personnel costs, and enhance the human experience, health, and well-being. The WELL Building Standard provides a vehicle to help achieve Dubai’s happiness agenda and wellness goals in particular.”
To learn more about EmiratesGBC’s involvement in the health and wellbeing topic under the green buildings umbrella, email us.

Exclusive Roundtable for members of the EmiratesGBC Developers Forum

September 17th brought together a group of leading developers from the UAE in a first in a series of bespoke events under the  EmiratesGBC Developers Forum initiative in an aim to increase the engagement of developers in sustainable development and green building best practices.

Organised under the theme ‘A Business Case for Green Buildings in the UAE,’ the event promoted a shared vision of sustainable development and advancing green building best practices to achieve the goals of the UAE Vision 2021.

Saeed Al Abbar, Chairman of EmiratesGBC, welcomed the audience with an introduction to the UAE green building market and how it links with the global movement, followed by ‘Government Spotlight’ presentations on Regulatory Initiatives by Graeme Lindsay Sims of Regulatory Supervisory Bureau (RSB) Dubai, and Existing Buildings by Mustapha Aanzi, Assistant Director Business Development of Etihad ESCO. Albinas Kontrimas, Associate – Project & Development Services, Middle East & North Africa, Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) presented a business case study, which was followed by an open discussion.

The participants offered different perspectives on green building development in the UAE with practical insights on how to advance sustainable built environments. They outlined the challenges and opportunities in developing green buildings and in undertaking the retrofitting of existing buildings and underlined their commitment to supporting the green vision of the nation.

If you are a UAE Developer and would like to join EmiratesGBC under the Developers Forum initiative, please contact engagement@emiratesgbc.org.

BEA Benchmarking Project – Call for Participation and Call for Sponsors

IMAGE BEA Benchmakring Tool features

We are pleased to invite Dubai Hotels, Shopping Malls and Schools to participate in a Benchmarking Project carried out in partnership with Dubai’s commitment to the Building Efficiency Accelerator, a global initiative under the United Nations program “Sustainable Energy for All”, in which EmiratesGBC is collaborating with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy.  To participate in this project, contact the EmiratesGBC office at  04-3468244 or send an email with your interest to BEA@emiratesgbc.org.

Under this initiative, we will benchmark at least 100 buildings in three focus groups (hotels, schools and shopping malls). To learn more about the Benchmarking Project, click here.

BEA Sponsorship opportunities are also open, and we invite you to learn more by clicking here.  For more information on how to support this important project as a sponsor, please contact engagement@emiratesgbc.org.

Nearly Zero Energy Buildings in the UAE Focus Day – A Rendition

Over the past year, EmiratesGBC has undertaken a comprehensive study of nZEBs including various concepts and global implementations. The UAE’s current initiatives, strategies, building codes and rating systems were evaluated. EmiratesGBC also reached out to 25 leading companies to obtain energy data on best practices of low energy buildings as well as surveyed 100 industry leaders and experts.

The report, ‘Defining Nearly Zero Energy Buildings in the UAE – 2017,’ authored by Majd Fayyad and Jason John, was launched by EmiratesGBC at an event supported by Dubai Chamber, held to mark the World Green Building Week 2017. The well-attended launch was followed by a stakeholder discussion on its key findings.

According to the report, a Nearly Zero Energy Building in the UAE is defined as ‘a highly energy efficient building with a site Energy Use Intensity (EUI) less than 90 kWh per sq metre per year, and covers a significant portion of its annual energy use by renewable sources produced on-site or off-site.’ This definition is meant to serve as a reference to support the development of nZEBs in the country.

EmiratesGBC Building Retrofit Training: Dubai Success  & Upcoming Training Sessions

After its inaugural launch in August, EmiratesGBC hosted the Building Retrofit Training Level One (Beginner) Course in Dubai on 13th September 2017.  The session included an interactive session with participants from various backgrounds, followed by a mini tour of heat recovery systems emphasizing the concepts of Building Retrofits.

Registration is now open for the next Building Retrofit Training Level One (Beginner) courses that are scheduled to take place on October 25th (Abu Dhabi) and November 16th (Dubai). For more details on the course cost, content and location, follow the link here.

Already made up your mind to register? Click here to book your seat today!

The BRT Program is In partnership with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and Masdar (Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company).

Your Green Building Tooltips for October 2017!

This month we encourage you to improve your lifestyle by adopting an EmiratesGBC Green Building Tooltip – “purchase wooden toys for children, wood is a renewable resource.”  Get them started when they’re young; lead our new generation toward environmentally responsible behaviour.

The EmiratesGBC Green Building Tooltips is a rich online platform serving to further educate the industry and community on simple green building practices.   The interactive designs cover three different building typologies, showcasing a home, school and office building.  The initiative is powered by BASF and Legrand, EmiratesGBC board members underlining their commitment to promoting sustainability.

We strongly urge you to visit the Green Building Tooltips on our website to test out this valuable online tool and fulfil your goal of pursuing a greener lifestyle whether it be at home, school or at the office.

Our Team: New Beginnings in October

As we enter October 2017, and as the EmiratesGBC team gets ready for the launch of its flagship event the 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress, we would like to take this as an opportunity to say our final farewell to Majd Fayyad, whose dedication and time with the Council as Technical Manager has left a clear mark in the Council’s successes, both on a professional and personal level.  We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavours.

We would also like to warmly welcome Bilal Maarouf Senior Technical Engineer;  Bilal is a Mechanical Engineer specialised in resources efficiency and sustainability in buildings and cities. He is an advocate of urban sustainability and works towards enhancing the knowledge capacity of the industry and academia alike.

EmiratesGBC Supports Upcoming Industry Exhibitions & Conferences

Energy Efficiency Expo 2018

EmiratesGBC is proud to announce our support as a Knowledge Partner of the upcoming Energy Efficiency Expo at World Future Energy Summit from 15- 18 January 2018 in Abu Dhabi under the theme “Sustaining the Clean Energy Consensus; Empowering new players’. As with last year, we are offering our members the opportunity to join the Emirates Green Building Council’s pavilion in a key location on the show floor. Stay tuned for more details over the coming months. If you are interested to secure your space under the EmiratesGBC Pavilion, please contact us.

EmiratesGBC supports ‘Sustainability Trends in the Middle East’ by JLL

Supported by EmiratesGBC ‘Sustainability Trends in the Middle East’ by JLL is in partnership with WSP Middle East, TAQATI will be held on the 16th of October 2017.Sustainability thought leaders in the UAE will come together under JLL’s umbrella on 16th of October 2017 from 8-10am at the Dubai Boardroom, Capital Club, DIFC, Dubai. Speakers will include: Denise Michela Sofia – EMEA Sustainability Officer – JLL
Eirini Matsouki – Sustainable Resource Management – WSP Middle East
Aref Abou Zahr – Executive Director – TAQATI
Chris Aird – Associate, Project & Development Services – JLL

The event is free to attend but pre-registration is required. RSVP to Medha.Sandrasagara@eu.jll.com

The Waste Management Middle East Forum

The Waste Management Middle East Forum (10 – 11 October 2017) will establish an in depth understanding of the current scenario and the challenges related to the waste management sectors in the middle east. The event will bring together industry leaders & subject experts who will shed light on the various approaches that can be adopted to tackle the issue of waste management faced by the region. Click here to learn more and register.

Emirates Environmental Group

On October 11th 2017, Emirates Environmental Group will be holding the next installment in its panel discussion series, entitled ‘Rethinking Infrastructure – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnerships (five P’s).’ EmiratesGBC’s Chairman, Saeed Al Abbar will be joining the discussion. Click here to register and learn more.

EmiratesGBC September Technical Workshop – Smart Buildings

On 18th September, EmiratesGBC Members were invited to learn about the technologies and components that make a smart building and how those elements compliment smart city initiatives. The workshop, held in EmiratesGBC’s office, discussed the key components of a city, the definition of a smarter city and how buildings can influence the transition of a city of becoming smarter.

The session was facilitated by our Corporate Member Ernst & Young, who was able to set the stage for further discussions and deeper insights on the importance of Smart buildings and how they contribute to the development of smart and efficient cities, the theme of the 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress.

EmiratesGBC Technical Workshops

There is a lot in store for the fourth quarter this year, with October and November centred around the theme of Smart Buildings, Sustainable Construction and Energy Efficiency.

On 10th October, EmiratesGBC will host a Contractors Workshop on sustainable construction practices at the Emirates Green Building Council. The workshop is open to all contractors and sub-contractors.

On 31st October, the Technical Workshop will highlight the benefits of electronically commutated motors which are ideal for ventilation and refrigeration industries.

On 7th November, the Technical Workshop will look at the potential in energy optimization of pumps through improvements in the pumps technology.

Each technical workshop is followed up with a technical brief summarizing the workshop discussions.  To view the briefs from previous technical workshops, please click here.

Are you an EmiratesGBC member or partner and would like to facilitate a workshop? Do you have any suggestions for topics to be addressed? If yes, then we’d like to hear from you – email us at technicalworkshops@emiratesgbc.org.

Academy Feature of the Month

This month we look at A Smarter Tomorrow Building City Life, a report by Honeywell and EY, which evaluated fifteen smart assets for more than 600 buildings from different industry sectors across seven cities, in four countries (UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait).  The key findings from the report show that there is no correlation between the smartness of a building and its age; building managers and owners perceive their buildings to be much smarter than the actual ranking achieved, suggesting room for improvements, and Dubai ranks among the highest in terms of their smart building capabilities.

In alignment with the region’s various national visions and Goal 11 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, increased emphasis is needed on making the region’s cities smarter, safer and more sustainable. Among the results, it was noteworthy to see that LEED and other green building certificates score almost 50% higher on the Honeywell Smart Building Score, which shows that moving towards a greener future also means moving towards a smarter future.

Click here to download and read more about the report.


Green Key Spotlight

Green Key International is now supported by its Corporate Partner Drinkable Air, a leading company manufacturing and distributing Atmospheric Water Generators (AWGs) designed to create an unlimited supply of pure drinking water from “the moisture in the air”.

AWGs lower environmental footprint by reducing water consumption from other sources and minimizing the production of plastic water bottles with the subsequent reduction in waste management from used plastic bottles. Placing such importance on water wastage is key to environmental management.

Upcoming Exam Preparation Training

In collaboration with British University in Dubai, we offer a series of trainings that prepare attendees for examinations including LEED and AEE courses. Please contact us for more details.

  • Certified Energy Manager October 15-18, 2017. Click here to access the flyer.
  • LEED GA October 13-14, 2017. Click here to access the flyer.
  • LEED AP (BD+C) November 9-11, 2017. Click here to access the flyer.

EmiratesGBC Technical Guidelines for Retrofitting Existing Buildings

Click here to learn more about how the Technical Guidelines for Retrofitting Existing Buildings can potentially save your facility and/or home millions in utility bills and reduced operational costs.  Copies are available in both English and Arabic for purchase at the EmiratesGBC office.

EmiratesGBC also offers a free copy of the Technical Guidelines, as part of your registration and participation in the Building Retrofit Training Workshop. For more details, please click here to complete registration.

EmiratesGBC in the News


Experts to discuss strategies for ‘Powering Smart, Happy, and Efficient Cities’ at 6th Annual EmiratesGBC Congress in Dubai 

Experts in diverse aspects of energy management will converge in Dubai for the sixth Annual EmiratesGBC Congress on October 17 and 18, 2017, to discuss strategies for promoting sustainable built environments.
Organised by Emirates Green Building Council (EmiratesGBC), an independent forum aimed at conserving the environment by strengthening and promoting green building practices, the annual Congress will be held at the Pullman Dubai Creek City Centre hotel, under the theme ‘Urban Energy: Powering Smart, Happy & Efficient Cities.’

The event has received strong support from industry stakeholders with AkzoNobel as Principal Sponsor and Majid Al Futtaim as Venue Sponsor. Also on board as Supporting Associations are Clean Energy Business Council, Emirates Environmental Group, EWS-WWF and Middle East Facility Management Association (MEFMA).  Read more…
EmiratesGBC organises first ‘Developers Forum Roundtable’ to strengthen green buildings in the UAE
According to a statement, the Emirates Green Building Council (EmiratesGBC) has organised its first ‘Developers Forum’ in Dubai, in an effort to shine a light on green building practices in the UAE. The independent body says this is the first in a series of planned events for members of the EmiratesGBC Developers Forum.

Held under the theme of ‘A Business Case for Green Buildings in the UAE’, the roundtable was attended by local semi-government and listed developers, including senior representatives from Emaar Properties, Diamond Developers, TECOM and RAK Properties. Read more …
EmiratesGBC to launch UAE’s first ‘Nearly Zero ENergy Buildings’ Report with in-depth discussion on Sept. 27
Emirates Green Building Council (EmiratesGBC), an independent forum aimed at conserving the environment by strengthening and promoting green building practices, will launch the UAE’s first ‘Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEBs)’ Report followed by a stakeholder discussion on the key findings of the report on September 27, 2017, from 8.30am to 12.30pm at the Dubai Chamber of Commerce.

The event is supported by Dubai Chamber and is held in celebration of the World Green Building Week 2017, which is being observed this year with the goal of making all buildings net zero by 2050 to win the fight against climate change.

Accordingly, the event will define the concept of nZEBs and serve as a referral point to support the strategy for developing nZEBs in the UAE. The report by EmiratesGBC will further complement the global trends in transitioning towards a low-carbon, low-energy economy and the development of nZEBs.  Read more…

UAE needs more green-efficient buildings, says report

A new and improved eco-standard to make buildings greener and more efficient to cut energy costs is set for implementation in the UAE to help the country cut its greenhouse gases, according to a new report from the Emirates Green Building Council released on Wednesday.

With up to 80 per cent of UAE’s electricity consumed by buildings for essentials such as air conditioning in a hot desert climate, moving to what are called “Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEBs)” to save energy and cut consumption is an important step into the future, those attending a forum hosted by the council in Dubai were told.

In a televised address on Wednesday, Lee Siang Tai, chairman of the World Green Building Council, encouraged his Dubai members to keep up their pursuit of carbon-cutting measures noting that by “nearly zero we mean buildings that produce no carbon”.  Read more…

 UAE is aligned with global timeline to implement ‘Nearly Zero Energy Buildings,’ reveals EmiratesGBC’s first dedicated report

The UAE is aligned with the global timeline to adopt the concept of ‘Nearly Zero Energy Buildings,’ states a new report by Emirates Green Building Council (EmiratesGBC), an independent forum aimed at conserving the environment by strengthening and promoting green building practices.  Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEBs) are an essential measure to support the UAE’s pledge of combating global warming.  To support the nation in achieving its green vision, EmiratesGBC undertook a comprehensive study of nZEBs including its various concepts and their global implementations. The UAE’s current initiatives, strategies, building codes and rating systems were evaluated.  Read more…

Local News


Towards the world’s happiest city

Aisha Bin Bishr, first woman to lead the Smart Dubai Office as director general, launched in October 2014 the Happiness Meter, a system enabling residents to express their satisfaction levels at every city interaction touchpoint. This system, extended to all digital customer interaction channels (mobile applications or web-based widgets), was the first step of a smart city strategy based on a broad use of city data to listen residents’ needs and increase the levels of happiness with city services offered by public and private actors in Dubai.  Read more…

Alef Group launches AED 3 billion pedestrian-friendly residential community

Alef Group, a Sharjah-based real estate developer, has launched a new AED 3 billion (US$ 820m) pedestrian-friendly residential development in the city’s Al Juraina area. Announced as Sharjah’s first fully-walkable community and covering an estimated area of 3 million square feet (279,000 sqm.), ‘Al Mamsha’ will offer a variety of modern apartments, from studios through to penthouses with private terraces.  Read more…

Regional & International News


L’Oreal targets doubling turnover in Middle East & also plans to focus investments on sustainability, growing market share

L’Oreal, the French cosmetics company, plans to double its turnover in the Middle East by 2020 as well as focus some investments on sustainability to reduce the company’s carbon footprint.

Thierry Houssin, managing director at L’Oreal Middle East, said the company is eyeing expansion into new product categories and growing its market share in segments like make-up and perfumes, which are popular in the region. Read more…

 Cheap Monday tailors clothing range to fit sustainability goals

Swedish streetwear company Cheap Monday has promised that by autumn 2018 it will use eco-friendly materials in all its denim, menswear and womenswear ranges.

Announcing the move yesterday as part of London Fashion Week, the firm said all its denim, 88 per cent of menswear, and 59 per cent of its womenswear are already labelled sustainable.

It said these proportions will gradually increase over the coming months to hit the 100 per cent target next year.

Cheap Monday, which specialises in unisex jeans and casual streetwear, labels its garments with a ‘Sustainable’ tag when they contain 50 per cent or more certified sustainable materials accredited by an independent certification body such as the Control Union or Institute for Marketecology (IMO).  Read more..

Climate action ‘becoming the norm’, says Sustainia

A new report listing 100 of the most innovative green solutions from 73 cities and 29 countries has been released to help other cities minimise the impact of climate-related disasters in the future.

Published by Sustainia, with support from C40 Cities and Realdania, the Cities100 report highlights examples of how cities are tackling climate change across five sectors: transport, waste, energy, mitigation and adaptation.

This is the third report produced by the international sustainability think tank. Pernille Jægerfelt, Analyst and Editor of Cities100, told Cities Today that in the first two years most applications were still at the planning level. However, this year a lot of the projects have been fully implemented and are already showing emissions reductions, improved air quality, and overall increased quality of life. The solutions are also coming from a wider geographical spread.  Read more…

How cities can better tap into EU smart city funding

Cities all over Europe are going smart. City officials in municipalities from Spain to Greece are taking their urban community to the next level and securing its success for generations to come. Deutsche Telekom is a partner with a proven track record of enabling decision-makers to understand the potential of smart city solutions with EU funding.

The word on everybody’s lips is ‘smart’. Over the past 18 months, support for digital answers to the needs of the modern city has snowballed. City officials recognise the rewards they can reap from innovation: smart cities are future-proof, they are sustainable, and they make for more equal societies. Deutsche Telekom has followed this growing momentum and built up second-to-none experience in guiding cities through the transition process.  Read more…

Seven years of global sustainability leadership

The GRESB results are in. And for the seventh year in a row, Australia’s real estate market has been named the world’s most sustainable.  GRESB, the global real estate sustainability benchmark, is the world’s leading data provider for environmental, social and governance performance of real assets.  This year, GRESB assessed 850 real estate companies and funds, representing more than 77,000 properties and AUD $4.6 trillion in global assets under management.  A record 66 Australian companies with $205 billion in assets reported to GRESB this year, up from 55 last year.

The Australia/New Zealand regional score was 73, compared with a global average of 63. Australia continues to lead the world, although GRESB acknowledges that the gap with other regions is slowly closing.   Read more…