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Nahyan votes for Bu Tinah

posted on 07/10/2010: 1945 views



Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research and top educators who gathered yesterday at the opening of the Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research's (ECSSR) First Conference "Education in the UAE, Current Status and Future Development", showed their support for the global campaign to vote Bu Tinah island as one of the 7 wonders of nature of the world by casting their votes at the Bu Tinah voting booth.

During the two- day conference, which concluded in the capital on Wednesday, Ahmed bin Shabib Al Daheri, member and a first vice president of the Federal National Council, Dr Majid Al Nuaimi, Minister for Education, Kingdom of Bahrain, Dr. Jamal Sanad Al-Suwaidi, director general, Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research and ECSSR staff and conference delegates (or attendees) also cast their votes for Bu Tinah island.

An integral part of the campaign, which was launched in March 2010, has been an Emirates-wide road-show educating the public on the unique wonder of nature that lies off the coast of Abu Dhabi. The Vote Bu Tinah! Booth has travelled to numerous Government entities, Company head quarters, Airport Terminals, Universities, Schools, Events and Exhibitions and is scheduled to reach every emirate before the end of the campaign period November 11, 2011.

Bu Tinah Island, located around 130 km west of Abu Dhabi, is a unique island and a core area of the Marawah Marine Biosphere Reserve - the first marine biosphere reserve in the region. In spite of the harsh temperatures and salinity, its habitats and species, including coral, seagrass, dugongs and sea turtles, continue to thrive, making the island an important location and living lab for climate change studies for years to come.

In March 2010, the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD) launched an international campaign to encourage people to vote for Bu Tinah Island as one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. The UAE's own Bu Tinah Island was shortlisted among 28 finalists from a list of 447 global sites. Winners of the New 7 Wonders of Nature will be announced on November 11, 2011.

The campaign is under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler's Representative in the Western Region and Chairman of EAD. The Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC), a master developer of major cultural, residential and tourism destinations in Abu Dhabi, is the campaign's Platinum Sponsor. Since the launch of the campaign, the Bu Tinah Island Voting Booth has toured more than 18 organisations across the UAE, as well as universities, schools, public exhibitions and events. This has resulted in EAD attracting thousands of votes for the Island whilst also raising the public's awareness on the UAE's fragile and rich biodiversity.



7 Reasons to Vote for Bu Tinah Island

1. Coral Reefs: Bu Tinah has globally unique corals. Their survival, despite the harsh environment, has given researchers insight into coral reef survival elsewhere in the world in the face of global warming.

2. Natural Mangroves: They reach an average height of 5 meters and support wildlife including birds, fish and crustaceans.

3. Hawksbill Turtles: Every year, these critically endangered species arrive to Bu Tinah Island to nest.

4. Dugongs: Bu Tinah Island supports the highest density of dugongs in the world, per square meter. These threatened species are often spotted swimming among the Island's extensive seagrass meadows. They have been able to live without disturbance in a clean natural sanctuary, thanks to EAD's management of the marine biosphere reserve.

5. Dolphins: The Indo-pacific humpback, bottlenose and common dolphins swim around the Island.

6. Ospreys: Bu Tinah Island is a major breeding site for this globally important bird.

7. Socotra Cormorants: Bu Tinah Island is a roost site for about 20,000-25,000 of these birds. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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