For Oman, the transition to cleaner energy sources is both an imperative and a practical economic path to a more sustainable future.
Non-Resident Fellow, AGSIW; Research Fellow, National University of Singapore’s Middle East Institute
Aisha Al-Sarihi is a non-resident fellow at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington and research fellow at the National University of Singapore’s Middle East Institute. Her areas of research interest include political economy of environmental sustainability, energy policy, renewables, and climate policies, with a focus on the Arab region. In addition to scientific publications, her research has appeared in different media outlets including Al Arabiya TV, Reuters, The Associated Press, The New Arab, Arab News, Asia Times, Earth Island Journal, and Oman Daily Observer.
She is a former research associate at KAPSARC as well as a former visiting scholar at Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies and the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington. She also served as a research officer at the London School of Economics and Political Science’s Middle East Centre. Al-Sarihi holds a PhD from the Centre for Environmental Policy at Imperial College London, and an MSc and a BSc, with distinction, in environmental science from Sultan Qaboos University.
COP28 is expected to create momentum for the Gulf states to advance their climate action ambitions and climate policy implementation.
Gulf Arab states are well positioned to join global forces to accelerate the development of clean hydrogen, but first they will have to cautiously address institutional, technical, cultural, and market barriers.
The Omani government’s focus on protecting the natural environment and wildlife goes back decades, but a shift in authorities might jeopardize the country’s progress toward advancing its national climate strategy.
All of the Gulf states have made progress in addressing climate change, but by the end of 2019, only the UAE and Oman had established national climate action plans.
For the Gulf Arab states, renewables could contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions while also supporting economic goals of meeting increasing domestic energy demand and creating jobs.
Climate Change and Economic Diversification in Saudi Arabia: Integrity, Challenges, and Opportunities
While Saudi Arabia’s long involvement in global climate change negotiations has attracted mounting attention, little is known about the kingdom’s climate change governance at the domestic level or its progress in terms of addressing climate change in line with economic diversification.
The Gulf states are in many ways among the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Carbon pricing could be a useful tool to meet emissions reduction goals and hence reduce the adverse climate impacts on the region, while at the same time presenting opportunities for economic diversification.
To meet the dual challenge of energy security and climate change, the Gulf Arab states need a holistic understanding of energy systems when planning an advantageous energy mix.
Burning coal produces almost double the amount of carbon dioxide than other fossil fuels such as diesel or natural gas.