Abu Dhabi, 20th June 2024: In 2023, a total of 314 governmental and private schools joined the internationally recognised Sustainable Schools Initiative (SSI), which was launched by the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD) in 2009.

The programme helps harness the culture of sustainability, promote eco-friendly practices, educate school students to measure their environmental impact, inspire them to drive change, and empower them to be socially responsible in the future.

To date, a total of 552 schools have joined the initiative, helping educate 344,384 students. Since their participation, a total of 153 schools have assessed their own environmental impact with 29,700 students performing community outreach through an SSI initiative called the Eco-club.


In addition, 213,469 students took part in hands-on field trips with EAD providing training and resource materials for 4,646 teachers. Furthermore, 2,081 community outreach projects were completed while 32,000 visitors gained an understanding of SSI at COP28 in Dubai.

Ahmed Baharoon, the Executive Director of Environment Information, Science Outreach Management Sector, at EAD said: “Recently at EAD, we have been very active in encouraging schools to join our Sustainable Schools Initiative and, in 2023 alone, managed to sign up 314 schools, making a total of 552 schools involved in the initiative. This is tangible evidence of the profound interest in schools becoming more sustainable with students participating in activities can help create more awareness around the importance of the environment in their daily lives.”

He added: “We are conducting a Green Stars accreditation system to assess participating schools based on their performance. This will incentivise other schools to take a more proactive approach to developing projects and initiatives geared towards protecting the environment and endorsing activations to stimulate student interest in sustainability.”  

In 2013, SSI won the Green Middle East Award for Best Environmental Awareness and Education Project and, in 2015, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) declared SSI an innovative model for education in sustainable development and recommended its implementation around the world.

Furthermore, in 2017, SSI was also recognised by Global Environmental Education Partnership (GEEP) as a worldwide case study in environmental education.  SSI fulfils the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) Greening Education Partnership strategy in collaboration with the Ministry of Education.
Cookies help us improve your website experience.
By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies.