The Supreme Council for Environment (SCE) organised, in cooperation with the National Communication Centre (NCC) a meeting with its Chief Executive, Dr. Mohammed bin Daina.

Held as part of NCC’s “Meeting with a Government Official” initiative and themed “Protecting the Environment for Future Generations”, the meeting was attended by representatives of local media outlets.

Dr. Bin Daina reviewed the SCE’s policies and plans, including the draft National Integrated Strategy for Waste Management (Phase 1), the preparation of the draft Third National Communication under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the draft first national voluntary report on Bahrain’s progress in achieving Sustainable Development Goals 2030 and the Gulf Environmental Partnership and Action Programme (GEPAP).

He also highlighted the SCE’s role in environmental assessment and monitoring through evaluating and licensing environmental, industrial and service projects in accordance with Decree-Law 21/1996 of 1996 and all its executive ministerial edicts and laws, through the comprehensive inspector programme, monitoring the import and use of chemicals, protecting the Ozone Layer, and pollution control of the marine environment from the source.

Regarding the monitoring of the quality of the marine environment, Dr. Bin Dinah said that SCE had developed the marine environment quality programme in the territorial waters since 1993, and controls sewage, water quality in the Arabian Gulf, and industrial solid waste sites.

On the SCE’s projects, Dr. Bin Dinah said that the SCE had worked on several projects, including the installation of artificial coral reefs and marinas at Najwat Bulthama, the reviving of the diving and pearl extraction industry, the tidal monitoring programme that led to the burial of beaches, and the cultivation of mangroves to protect the region from rising sea levels due to global warming.

Dr. Bin Daina also listed the regional and international agreements to which the SCE had acceded, namely the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in November 2012, the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), and the Memorandum of Understanding on the Protection of Marine Turtles.

He also pointed out that the SCE had cooperated with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and implemented agreements, including two cooperation projects in 2016-2017, adding that the SCE obtained funding for a national technical cooperation project on strengthening the national infrastructure for the control of radiation and radioactive and nuclear materials.

On the SCE’s achievements, he said that the SCE had opened a joint customs office with the Customs Affairs, trained air conditioning and refrigeration technicians, of whom 200 trainees had graduated with international accreditation from the Shaikh Khalifa Institute in cooperation with UNIDO, opened a national centre for recycling ozone-depleting gases, and banned the use of non-biodegradable plastic bags, which contributes to achieving SDGs and protecting the environment.

Responding to a question by the Bahrain News Agency (BNA) on the importance of opening recycling plants, he stressed that the move contributes significantly to the proper disposal and recycling of waste, especially medical waste, assists the private sector in the disposal of waste and encourages the investment sector in the Kingdom.

During the same meeting, NCC’s Director of Communication and Media relations, Fatima Al-Sairafi, affirmed NCC’s keenness to hold such direct meetings with government officials and the media to update the public about the work progress of government departments, as well as their plans and efforts to develop the government’s action in Bahrain.