Fouad overseeing preparations for COP27
Preparations are well underway in Sharm El-Sheikh, which will host the UN COP27 Climate Change Conference next month, with the focus this week being on developing the Red Sea city’s blue and green zones that will host some of the conference activities.
The Blue Zone comprises buildings and services, including a state-of-the-art conference hall that will also serve as a real-life model for sustainable environmental compatibility complete with logistical, technical, and technological features.
The Blue Zone comprises another conference hall that is being expanded to accommodate the increasing number of participants at the conference, which may well reach 30,000 visitors from all over the world.
The zone is also seeing field work to install structures and murals for holding exhibitions, registration, and services for participating countries.
The Green Zone, located nearby, will serve as a platform for the business community, youth, women, civil society, residents, academia, artists, and the fashion community from different countries to express themselves, make their voices heard, and get easily connected with official delegations participating in the conference.
The aim is to help officials listen to different ideas, solutions, and successful models with the aim of accelerating climate action.
The Green Zone will also host Africa Day and other thematic days on topics related to climate change. It will see events on the fringes of the COP27 that focus on financing, youth participation, civil society, women, biodiversity, nature-based solutions, and carbon neutrality.
Environment Minister Yasmine Fouad, in Sharm El-Sheikh this week to oversee developments at the green and blue zones, said her ministry had received 268 requests to rent spaces totalling 11,553 square metres in the Green Zone throughout the duration of the conference.
She added that the close proximity between the zones would allow visitors to go to the Peace Garden and its amphitheatre to enjoy various artistic and creative activities. There will be different types of food served in the vicinity, as well as meeting areas and regional and international pavilions, which will be an opportunity for networking between participating groups.
For the first time in COP history, a fashion and arts forum will be held in the Green Zone, the minister noted, pointing to the importance of the arts in increasing public awareness about climate change.
The forum will also host events on recycling, the means to preserve resources, and measures to decrease the repercussions of climate change. There will be fashion shows dedicated to recycling and reuse with the participation of entrepreneurs from Egypt, Fouad said.
The minister earlier held a video conference with representatives of fashion and furniture brands to discuss recycling and reuse. They expressed their desire to participate in the COP27 fashion shows that use recycling and reuse to raise awareness about climate change.
*A version of this article appears in print in the 6 October, 2022 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.