x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Nakheel to build 500 artificial reefs off Dubai coast

Nakheel is to build 500 artificial reefs off the coast of Dubai to help develop marine life and sustain the emirate's fishing industry. 

Nakheel is to build 500 artificial reefs off the coast of Dubai to help develop marine life and sustain the emirate's fishing industry. AFP PHOTO/MARWAN NAAMANI
Nakheel is to build 500 artificial reefs off the coast of Dubai to help develop marine life and sustain the emirate's fishing industry. AFP PHOTO/MARWAN NAAMANI

Nakheel is to build 500 artificial reefs off the coast of Dubai to help develop marine life and sustain the emirate's fishing industry.

Construction on the project, which is being built in consultation with Emirates Marine Environmental Group (EMEG), will begin in the next three months and last about a year.

"We thought it is important to help increase the marine life," said Ali Rashid Lootah, chairman of Nakheel. "It's a normal practice that international businesses do some social work and we thought that because most of our development is on the marine side, we thought [the social work] should be that side."

The 500 artificial reefs will be built in and around Nakheel's various developments, such as the Palm Jumeirah, the World and the Palm Jebel Ali, and will be open for public use and fishing.

Mr Lootah said that project was not in response to a report by the United Nations University that Gulf coastal projects were damaging the ecosystem for marine life in the region.

Nakheel said it did not have an estimated cost for the project, but Keith Wilson, marine programme director at (EMEG) said a similar reef project had been built in Hong Kong at a cost of US$15 million.

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