Science & Technology

KAUST Deploys Scientific Research to Combat Desertification on World Environment Day

The world is celebrating World Environment Day on June 5. The event’s theme this year is land restoration, desertification and drought resilience.

On this occasion, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) has directed its scientific research studies to combat desertification, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Innovative Solutions

KAUST, through its startup company “Terraxy,” has developed innovative solutions for afforestation in the Kingdom, and transforming organic landfills for desert afforestation and carbon capture.

This aligns with the Kingdom’s pledge to reduce the burial of organic waste 90% by 2035. Additionally, it has pledged to adopt a vision that focuses on enhancing desert agriculture, desert reclamation, urban afforestation, establishment of public parks and green spaces.

Furthermore, KAUST is developing a method to treat organic waste and capture carbon. It is also contributing to afforestation, by producing the patented soil improver “Carbo Soil” through specialized, multi-step treatment of organic waste.

Moreover, KAUST has made advancement in the field of climate-smart agricultural technologies, through its startup company “Iyris.” This has included helping farmers to grow fresh crops in harsh climate.

The University is also developing technologies to ensure sustainable food security for the world, given that agriculture consumes more than 70% of fresh water to grow food across the world.

Projections indicate that the global agricultural technology market will reach $7.4bn by 2030.

World Environment Day

World Environment Day is celebrated annually since 1973 on June 5. Led by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the event has become the largest global platform for environmental awareness.

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, hosts this year’s event. The Kingdom is among the nations that have embraced land restoration. It is also working to fulfill nature protection goals outlined in its Vision 2030.

To this end, Saudi Arabia has extended safeguards to more than 18 per cent of its land, up from 4 per cent. It has also increased the number of national parks to more than 400, from 19.

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