ABU DHABI // Environmental conservation is a part of UAE culture and tradition, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, told the UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon yesterday.
"We must continue our efforts and retain the same passion and determination and vision to face future challenges, even if our resources of energy buried underground were to fall or dry up," Sheikh Mohammed said after the meeting with Mr Ban.
Masdar City, Abu Dhabi's green initiative, showed the UAE's "deep faith" in finding alternative solutions to problems and was a "mark of progress", Sheikh Mohammed said.
Mr Ban said the UAE, with its renewable energy initiatives, had presented "a live example and a valuable message to others in the region and the world".
Abu Dhabi had become a centre for international co-operation in renewable energy because of the research conducted at Masdar, he said.
Sheikh Mohammed said the Masdar project could act as an example and incentive for other countries in the Middle East, which meant it was essential for the UAE to pursue it.
He said it was necessary for the Emirates to focus on quality education in the future to retain the gains realised by its focus on renewable energy.
Mr Ban also met with Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
In comments published on the state news agency, WAM, Mr Ban praised the UAE for its support of peace, stability, the environment and its work in disaster-struck countries.
The UAE was one of the first responders to the floods that inundated Pakistan last summer, and participated in relief operations in Haiti.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said the UAE was determined to extend assistance to people in need without distinction of race, religion and political or geographical affiliation, according to WAM.