Environmental Problems Plague Dubai

After decades of rapid urbanization, the emirate is now contending with a wide range of challenges to its environment and infrastructure.

1 minute read

October 30, 2010, 5:00 AM PDT

By Lynn Vande Stouwe


Dubai's infrastructure failures should serve as a cautionary tale to other Middle Eastern countries looking to mirror its successes, says Liz Alderman. The essential process of desalinating water for drinking is raising the gulf's salinity rate to levels that threaten marine life. Sewage treatment systems can't keep up with development. Furthermore, construction and industrial projects use so much energy that oil-rich Dubai is turning to nuclear power.

Alderman writes:

"Authorities acknowledge that the breakneck pace has stressed natural resources throughout the region. Efforts to achieve developed status within the next 20 years have ‘magnified' the challenges to environmental protection."

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