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Endorsed Community - Masdar City

BioRegional and WWF Abu Dhabi unveil plan for world’s first carbon-neutral, waste-free, car-free city “Masdar City”.

One Planet Living® sustainability plan developed for “Masdar City”


The planet with a heart logo is used to show that projects have an approved Sustainability Action Plan and aim to meet tough One Planet Living targets.

The world's first sustainable
city will begin construction in
Abu Dhabi later this year
© Foster & Associates
On January 8th 2008 eco-community experts BioRegional, WWF, and the government of Abu Dhabi launched a “Sustainability Action Plan” to deliver the world’s greenest city – Masdar City.

Masdar City will be the world’s first zero-carbon, zero-waste, car-free city. BioRegional has led the development of an ambitious Sustainability Action Plan aiming to enable One Planet Living® at Masdar, in association with developers Mubadala, their Foster & Partners – led masterplanning team and WWF UAE.

Masdar has been benchmarked against the global network of One Planet Living Communities being developed by BioRegional with developer partners. “One Planet Living™” is a global initiative launched by WWF and BioRegional based on 10 unique principles of sustainability.

Through the “One Planet Living Communities” programme, BioRegional and WWF UAE will work with Masdar to ensure the city meets the highest
standards of sustainability, including specific targets for the city’s ecological footprint. Masdar City’s ambitious plans aim to exceed baseline criteria of the programme, making it a global benchmark for sustainable living.

Housed in six-square kilometres, Masdar City’s electricity and cooling will be provided by renewable energy generated on site. Water consumption will be reduced by over 50% compared to the Abu Dhabi baseline. Landscaping within the site will be irrigated with grey water and treated waste water produced by the city’s water treatment plant. Ground breaks for the
construction of the city in 2008.

The city is part of the Masdar Initiative, Abu Dhabi’s multi-faceted, multi-billion dollar investment in the exploration, development and commercialisation of future energy sources and clean technology solutions. A model of the Masdar City will be unveiled on January 21, at the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi.

Pooran Desai OBE, co-founder of BioRegional and Technical Director of the One
Planet Living Communities programme, said Masdar would be the largest and one of the most advanced sustainable communities in the world.

“The vision of One Planet Living is a world where people everywhere can lead happy, healthy lives within their fair share of the Earth’s resources. Masdar gives us a breathtaking insight into this positive, alternative future.

BioRegional are working with developers across the globe to deliver One Planet Living and we have been extremely impressed by the commitment of Mubadala and the Foster & Partners-led design team to deliver a true global flagship project at Masdar.

“In realising the goal of a sustainable future, Masdar will strive to achieve benchmarks set by the One Planet Living Programme’s Ten Guiding Principles, covering issues that range from how waste is dealt with to the energy performance of the buildings.”

Jean-Paul Jeanrenaud, Director of WWF International’s One Planet Living initiative, said, ”Today Abu Dhabi is embarking on a journey to become the global capital of the renewable energy revolution. Abu Dhabi is the first hydrobarbon-producing nation to have taken such a significant step towards sustainable living.

Masdar is an example of the paradigm shift that is needed. The strategic vision of the Abu Dhabi government is a case study in global leadership. We hope that Masdar City will prove that sustainable living can be affordable and attractive in all aspects of human living – from businesses and manufacturing facilities to universities and private homes.

Dr. Sultan al Jaber, CEO of the Masdar Initiative, said, “Masdar City will question conventional patterns of urban development, and set new benchmarks for sustainability and green design – the students, faculty and businesses located in Masdar City will not only be able to witness innovation first-hand, but they will actually be able to participate in its development.”

“We are pleased to be able to work with One Planet Living to make our vision a reality,” he said.

BioRegional are working with Stockholm Environment Institute to develop a range of Ecological Footprint scenarios for the Masdar City. WWF and the Global Footprint Network are also working with the government of Abu Dhabi to improve ecological footprint accounting and develop strategies for footprint reduction.

Last updated 23rd April 2008