An enormous flexible canopy of photovoltaic cells will shade the pavilions at Dubai’s 2020 expo, an innovative step towards greater energy efficiency for the international event, but critics warn that the workers slated to build the necessary infrastructure stand to suffer the most.
Westerners may be confused about Middle Eastern customs and how people, men especially, use the ‘squat’ toilet. How we “go” impacts our environment: sit down toilets, and toilet paper consume more resources. Here is a guest post from the Sex and Saudi blog on how Saudi Arabians urinate.
Guess who might be the culprit carrying a new SARS-like virus to people in the Middle East?
With the global village getting smaller every day, it starts to become inconceivable that our access to the Internet and local phone calls require a complicated network and chip change every time we cross borders. A new chip, developed by Israeli engineers hopes to change that.
The Arabian Gulf has waters that are some of the world’s most saline; and where water temperatures often reach as high as 35 degrees Celsius during the hot summer months. Despite these harsh realities, the waters of the Gulf contain a variety of aquatic plants and animals.
A day late and an undergarment short! The morning after Thanksgiving, I read about a new stress-busting bra that could’ve kept me from, once again, approaching turkey-day as a competitive eating event.
Jordan is pushing ahead with the largest commercial scale wind farm in the Middle East region, the Tafila Wind Farm, seemingly without care for the massive bird migration population that passes through Jordan twice a year. Green Prophet called Israel’s Bird King, bird migration specialist Prof. Yossi Leshem.
With no appreciable amounts of oil or natural gas, Jordan, like Syria is a Middle East anomaly when it comes to its fossil fuel rich neighbours like Saudi Arabia and Israel. But new energy is blowing into Jordan.
Some people talk about change and others actually make it. At the TEDx Hiriya event held yesterday at the Recycling Park, nine leading Arab and Jewish Israelis gathered to showcase social change in action.
Last week, the Gaza Strip and its zoo witnessed the unprecedented birth of two African lion cubs at the Beesan Zoo, a facility in the northern part of the densely populated Strip that was built and opened by the Islamist Hamas movement. But just three days later, the cubs died, from unknown causes.
Tetra Pak sold roughly 1.625 billion packages in Egypt in 2011, of which only 20 percent were recycled. That’s a lot of untreated waste, but now the company has pledged $340,000 to boost the country’s recycling capacity. They want to make their business more sustainable.
Israelis are well known for being industrious – especially when it comes to turning innocuous every day materials such as tomato cans, or in Naama Arad’s case, paper into beautiful works of art.
It’s that frying time of the year again. Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival of Lights which lasts for eight days. The holiday commemorates the victory of the Jewish people against Antiochus IV Epiphanes in 165 B.C, and the restoration of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which had been ransacked and desecrated. The light in the Temple,[.....]
Efforts to find solutions to Cairo Egypt’s mounting garbage problems have ranged from allowing hundreds of thousands of pigs to eat the city’s organic wastes’ to using rag pickers to sort through the mountains of garbage that have accumulated.
Israel, being on the “land bridge” that links it with Africa and Asia Minor, has always been well known for a number of biblical fruits. These include: the multi-seed pomegranates, grapes from which superb wines are now made; and of course several varieties of dates and olives. Another iconic fruit, although not native, comes from the[.....]
I never thought that I would agree with Zaha Hadid, the Iraqi starchitect who has failed time and again to support the green building movement. But her dismissal of claims that the Al-Wakrah stadium looks like a vagina has my support.
The Skateistan skateboarding school first established in Kabul shelters girls and street kids from Afghanistan’s harsh realities. Since then, it has been so successful, the non-profit NGO has established two more locations.
Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates have all ranked among the world’s top 10 fattest nations with ballooning obesity rates and an explosion of associated diseases. But there’s an upside to oversize:
Amman’s old Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA) terminal will live on in a new artwork commissioned by airport operator Airport International Group (AIG). The permanent installation near the majestic new passenger terminal will be a symbolic nod to the proud history of Amman’s premier aeronautical gateway.
With a plan to take to the streets with cuddles, the police decided it was better to arrest a Saudi man and his friend before their “plot” to give out free hugs began.
Qatar is undergoing a massive change, and many of the world’s top architects are hoping to become a part of the action. Zaha Hadid and AECOM have weighed in with the Al-Wakrah stadium, and now Sou Fujimoto has re-imagined Doha with a series of modular stacked arches.
Polio,or Poliomyelitis has not been a serious medical issue ever since the first wide scale vaccines were developed by Dr. Jonas Salk in the early 1950s. Within the past few years, however, the often debilitating virus has began to return to epidemic proportions in many parts of the world. This includes the Middle East.
At a bargain basement price tag of only $450,000 the Israeli startup Gnrgy has bought the assets of the failed electric car company Better Place. Will the third time be the charm? Two other companies have tried to buy Better Place but failed. Gnrgy makes the most sense so far.
It turns out that bees are not only essential to global food production, they also make amazing sniffer “dogs.” Which is how Portuguese designer Susana Soares is able to train Apis mellifera to detect cancer and tuberculosis on human breath.
An Arab-owned restaurant in Abu Ghosh, Israel has come up with a brilliant new Slow Food marketing campaign that may get people eating better: restaurant owner Jawdat Ibrahim has promised a whopping 50 percent off your bill if you turn your cell phone off when dining.
Women in the Middle East are being encouraged to take up a career in renewable energy, thanks to a new initiative. The Women in Solar Initiative is aimed at engaging more women into roles within engineering, as significant growth and change takes place within the sector.
The Qatar Foundation is distinguishing itself as a leader at Greenbuild, the world’s largest gathering of green building pioneers in Philadelphia, where Hilary Clinton will deliver the 2013 keynote address tomorrow.
Green Prophets burn lots of calories trying to make the planet a better place, but you can’t do much do-gooding if you’re dead. I’ll share a day in my week as a cautionary tale (and offer a peek into Amman’s excellent, and sometimes culturally surreal, medical system).
With almost a billion in financing and electric battery charge and change stations in place nationwide, at its critical hour Israel’s electric car company Better Place failed. It went bankrupt this year. One of its first investors, and biggest backers Michael Granoff will be writing a tell-all book. He speaks with Green Prophet.
Middle East architects Raya Ani and Zayad Motlib first told us about their plans for Mesopotamian Marshlands ecosystem and community earlier this year, and now they’re presenting their ideas to the first AIA Middle East conference in Dubai.
Tunisian female footballer Fatima Maleh announced on national radio that she is now a man, legally registered in civil records as Mohammad Ali. One not-small step for this man; and a giant leap for Tunisia’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community.
Qatar has promised a carbon neutral 2022 World Cup, but we know from the Masdar City experiment how hard that is to achieve. Still, here are five dubious steps AECOM and Zaha Hadid Architects are reported to be taking to support that goal with their joint design – Al-Wakrah Stadium.
Kneecaps darkened by repetitive prayer in a kneeling position just ain’t pretty. Even if your gams aren’t publicly paraded, it’s not a look most of us want to achieve. You can slather on harsh chemical bleaching creams, but how about trying an eco-remedy instead?
Finding a solution to the problem of raw sewage reclamation in rural Palestinian communities continues to be an ongoing issue. A new peace project between an Israeli treatment company Mapal Green Energy and the Palestinian Authority could sweeten tensions behind a stinky problem.
The UN Food and Agriculture Organization in Gaza has set up a project addressing Gaza’s food insecurity, reports The Star. Where a buffer zone now stands on former agricultural land, farming has disappeared.
Our favorite peace-water NGO Friends of the Earth Middle East have just held a conference in Jordan last week and there had faith leaders sign the “Covenant for the Jordan River” to save the Jordan River.
Lebanese renewable energy have fallen short of its ambitious goal of reaching 12 percent of Lebanon’s energy needs by the year 2020. But now it is in the middle of building its first wind farm at about 60 MW in the country’s north.
The number of people left homeless by the devastating Philippines typhoon Haiyan has topped 800,000 according to the latest United Nations estimate. Haiyan was the biggest storm ever recorded to reach landfall, wiping out entire villages and killing over 4,000 people (numbers continue to rise). Feeling the inevitable urge to assist?
Dubai’s metro started running in 2009 (don’t fall asleep though) but Abu Dhabi, the wealthier Emirate, is only now reducing its dependence on cars with a swanky new rail and tram system. And Siemens hopes to hop on board.
There’s traffic. And then there is Cairo traffic, which can drive even the saintliest men and women to a special kind of madness. But a new public transportation option has popped up that could make getting from point A to point B significantly less stressful.
It is one of the most important bodies of water in the world, the only one to link the Persian Gulf with the open ocean, and it is frequently at risk of closure due to politics. Here’s your chance to design a new bridge for the Strait of Hormuz.
A photographic series entitled Pacific Light captures a spellbinding dance that begins when ink, paint and soap collide. Watch stunning color combinations puddle and swirl. Visual artist Ruslan Khasanov snapped gorgeous photos, but his video and GIFs (short for Graphic Interchange Format, a form of computer image that moves as soundless animation) are spectacular.
A replacement for oil has become a burning need in the 21st century. Ben-Gurion University of the Negev researchers in Israel have invented a process to make a green feed alternative for crude oil out of two of the most common substances on Earth – water and carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas.
Beirut residents are fed up: everywhere they look there are cranes and bulldozers turning their city into a giant concrete mess and even the smallest efforts to beautify the city are destroyed. This time they are saying no to a municipal plan to demolish the iconic Massad stairs.
The same team behind SunGlacier, an extraordinary solar-powered artificial leaf that produces ice in the middle of the desert, has come up with a new concept – ‘Desert Cascades.’
A tiny two-person electric car may be the last choice for Formula One race car drivers, but that was the electric ride of choice last week as Formula One drivers rode around Dubai. With massive luxury cars as the status quo, the Twizy was an unusual choice. But alas, it was all about promotion by Renault.
The European Space Agency (ESA) publishes satellite photos of Earth (and photos of space taken from Earth) in an incredible archive that’s updated weekly. Each image is paired with a brief explanation about what you’re looking at. Check out this selection – if the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) could take “selfies”, these would[.....]
Just in case you thought that UN’s 95 percent certainty that climate change is happening is a gimmick, the same United Nations body assessing our fate and its connection to greenhouse gas emissions released last week another shocker that’s no big surprise: last year 2012, saw the greatest amount of emissions to our planet yet.
Who says that garbage can’t be used to create energy, including electricity? The same garbage that created eyesores like the Tel Aviv Garbage Mountain, where Israel hopes to build the Middle East’s largest recycling plant will also be used to create power from natural gas.
Jewish American ex patriots living in Israel and abroad will have a special treat this year as the American secular holiday of Thanksgiving and the beautiful Festival of Lights, Hanukkah, will occur together in unique calendar coincidence that will not happen again for more than 77,000 years.
Cyprus has one of the worst fresh water shortage than other regional countries, including Lebanon, Israel and Syria. The problem is so bad that reservoirs have gone dry and trees are dying.
Bicycle riding in the Middle East is thwarted by challenging climate and terrain, and to lesser extent by culture. A new invisible helmet, akin to an airbag, and pictured above, could incite more Middle Eastern cycling.