Manama, Mar. 23 (BNA): The 2nd annual International Sustainable Energy Event (iSEE 2021) and associated exhibition kicked off remotely today under the patronage of President of the Sustainable Energy Authority (SEA) Dr. Abdulhussain bin Ali Mirza. The forum, organised by Bahrain Society of Engineers and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Bahrain, was held virtually this year in tune with the national efforts to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and maintain continuity of the development march.
The two-day event also aims to support the national efforts to further develop the sustainable energy sector in the kingdom which has become a key player in promoting the kingdom’s standing on the world development map in terms of achieving the UN sustainable development goals, handling climate change and boosting the concept of sustainability at all development levels, including the energy one.
Dr. Mirza commended the unlimited support of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, to the energy sector, pointing out the kingdom’s strides in implementing the national plans for renewable energy and energy competence.
Held under the slogan “Sustainability for a Brighter Future”, the virtual forum kick-started with a speech by Dr. Mirza in which he shed light on the main global developments to ensure sustainability of energy resources. He pointed out Bahrain’s keenness on diversifying its energy resources through a combination between fossil energy and the renewable one. He also stressed the kingdom’s endeavor to cut down the cost of electricity and water for citizens by availing of renewable energy and boosting energy competence.
Chief Executive of the Electricity and Water Authority (EWA), Shaikh Nawaf bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa, participated as a keynote speaker. Addressing the audience, he highlighted EWA’s strategies and their compatibility with the national efforts to achieve sustainability of energy resources and their coping with the international context. He stressed cooperation of EWA with the SEA to provide the needed support to the sustainable energy sector in the Kingdom of Bahrain to ensure Bahrain honours its national, regional and international obligations.
President of Bahrain Society of Engineers, Dr. Dhia Tawfiqi stressed in his speech compatibility of iSEE 2021with the issue adopted by UNESCO marking the World Engineering Day 2021 which is observed on March 4. He pointed out that the theme chosen for 2021 focuses on engineering in backing the UN sustainable development goals. He took pride in the rapid response of Bahrain Society of Engineers in activating the theme through partnership with the SEA by organising the annual forum which provides a unique platform to exchange visions and experiences.
Dr. Mirza and Dr. Dhia praised the interest shown in the forum which saw the participation of more than 900 participants representing government institutions, major industrial companies, specialized companies, students and individuals from over 27 countries. They also thanked the private sector for sponsoring the forum, citing the Diamond Sponsorship by Bapco, the Platinum Sponsorship by Linxon Company, the Golden Sponsorship by Banagas and Tatweer Petroleum companies and the Silver Sponsorship by Al-Mannai Group, Yellow Door Energy company, Al-Moayed Company and Comsip company.
For his part, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Kingdom of Bahrain, Stefano Pettinato, expressed gratitude of UNDP for being a firm partner in promoting the sustainable development agenda in the Kingdom. He said being a key driver for this agenda, sustainable energy must be one of the main pillars in the strategies and plans to achieve sustainable and comprehensive development.
The UNDP Resident Representative expressed hope the forum would come up with positive results that will reflect on strengthening Bahrain’s policies to achieve sustainable growth at the national and international level. He also praised the great strides made by the Kingdom of Bahrain in promoting the sustainable energy sector, stressing the significant and pivotal role of the Sustainable Energy Authority in achieving this under the leadership of Dr. Abdul Hussain bin Ali Mirza. He also voiced the UNDP’s keenness to continue supporting the efforts of the SEA and all relevant authorities to achieve the desired goals of the sustainable energy sector.