QU marks Environment Day with a commitment to sustainability

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Qatar University officials during National Environment Day celebrations.

Doha: The Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences of Qatar University (QU) celebrated National Environment Day.

The celebration included a series of events and activities with the participation of QU students and faculty members, as well as students from several secondary schools in Qatar.

The celebration aimed to educate students about ecosystems and motivate the younger generation to be more responsible for their environment and habitats.

Professor Ahmed Elzatahry, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Khalifa Hazaa, Associate Dean of Science and Applied Sciences, and Professor Mohammed Abu-Dieyeh, Head of the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences also attended the celebrations and participated in the distribution of tree seedlings.

A series of activities, including a lecture by Ahmed ElGharib from the Koranic Botanical Garden, and a lecture on the initiative to plant a million trees in Qatar presented by Mohammed Ali Al Khoori, Director of the Department of Public Parks at the Ministry of the Municipality, were organized

Free seedlings were distributed to students to participate in the plant a million tree initiative. In addition, all QU students are invited to participate in two environmental competitions, one of which is for the best image depicting Qatar’s plants and the other for the best environmental article on Qatar’s plants.

In his speech on the sidelines of the event, Professor Ahmed Elzatahry confirmed that the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences is celebrating the occasion on behalf of the University.

He noted that the environment and its sustainability are at the center of the university’s academic programs and a major priority in scientific research.

“The Environment” is considered one of the four pillars of Qatar’s National Vision 2030. This celebration is part of Qatar University’s long-term commitment to promoting environmental conservation and sustainability. for the benefit of society.

Dr. Khalifa Hazaa, Vice Dean of Science and Applied Science, said QU, with its scientific and environmental research, are the most important tributaries to serve and preserve the environment.

For his part, Prof. Dr. Mohammad Abu-Dieyeh – Head of the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences highlighted the importance of this event in educating students on Qatar’s environment, and more specifically on biodiversity. Qatar is endowed with nearly 400 species of plants, which represent a natural wealth, but rather a treasure that must be preserved.

“The study of the biology, the environment and the uses of these plants requires a great effort on the part of researchers to reach their potential and their uses. Among the plants of Qatar, there is what lives entirely in salt water, which is the mangrove plant. It has become known the importance of this plant for fishing and the ecosystem in general.

There are three types of seagrass, classified as flowering plants and inhabited by over 600 species of sea animals. In the terrestrial part, there are about 400 species of plants that live in a harsh environment of drought, salinity and poor soils, but they resist, live and reproduce. On the contrary, they have lived in these conditions for thousands of years, and they remain and represent the basis of ecosystems.

“From here I say that it is hoarded with different genetic material that requires special care. And not only that, this genetic treasure carries on its surfaces and inside its tissues as well as in the environment surrounding the roots, another treasure trove of microbes with which it coexists in symbiotic relationships and that these microbes have many of the most important technological applications in agricultural applications.

“At the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, we have started studying these microbes and investigating their various benefits,” Dr. Abu-Dieyeh said.

He added that this year’s celebration is organized in cooperation with the Quranic Botanical Garden of the Qatar Foundation and with the Department of Public Parks of the Ministry of Municipality. Planting one million trees in Qatar means a lot to rehabilitate environmental habitats, reduce air pollution and carbon emissions, in addition to limiting soil pollution from toxic hydrocarbons and heavy metals.

Dr. Abu-Dieyeh stressed that the department will continue to cooperate with the Ministry of Municipality and the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change to plan several joint activities and campaigns related to the activation of the initiative to plant a million of trees in Qatar as well as the involvement of graduate students and faculty members in research on biodiversity and environmental protection and sustainability.

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