The emirate of Ras Al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates has achieved a remarkable milestone in its journey toward sustainability. It proudly earned Silver Certification from EarthCheck’s Sustainable Destinations program. This recognition is significant, making Ras Al Khaimah the first destination in the Middle East to achieve such a high level of sustainability certification.
EarthCheck’s certification process is known for its rigorous evaluation based on scientific criteria. It involves benchmarking, monitoring, and auditing across ten sustainability indicators. These indicators span across various areas, including energy and water consumption, waste management, carbon footprint analysis, and community engagement.
This achievement in Ras Al Khaimah is particularly noteworthy because of the region’s challenging climate, necessitating a robust approach to managing energy and water consumption to meet EarthCheck’s stringent requirements. It exemplifies a commitment to sustainability, even in adverse conditions.
This achievement comes just in time for the United Nations’ climate change conference, COP28, scheduled to be held in the UAE in late November. The focus of this year’s conference is to work towards a global emissions reduction target of 43 percent by 2030.
Raki Phillips, the Chief Executive Officer of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, emphasized the significance of this Silver Certification. It marks a significant step toward Ras Al Khaimah’s goal to lead in sustainable tourism not only in the UAE but also in the broader region by 2025.
Phillips expressed gratitude to the local tourism community for their unwavering commitment to achieving EarthCheck’s Silver Certification. This accomplishment aligns with the ambitious target of welcoming over three million visitors by 2030, showcasing Ras Al Khaimah’s commitment to sustainable tourism.
Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority has introduced its sustainability certification program for tourism businesses known as Responsible RAK. This initiative is powered by EarthCheck’s scientific data and involves more than 20 tourism businesses. These businesses actively measure their environmental impact and take concrete steps towards sustainability.
Among those who have embraced Responsible RAK Silver Certification are well-known entities, including Al Hamra Beach, The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Jais Flight (home to the world’s longest zipline), SAFARAK Travel and Tour Company, and Jais Sledder, to name a few. Their commitment to sustainable practices contributes significantly to Ras Al Khaimah’s recognition as a sustainable destination.
Ras Al Khaimah is not stopping at Silver Certification. The emirate is actively forming partnerships with leading operators and developers who prioritize sustainability. One of these notable collaborations is with Wynn Al Marjan Island, renowned for its dedication to sustainability best practices. They’ve earned distinctions like LEED Platinum and Four Green Globes certifications for their buildings.
In a world where sustainable practices are crucial, Ras Al Khaimah‘s journey to become a sustainable destination is an inspiring example of what can be achieved with determination and a commitment to the environment and the future.