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HH Sheikh Hamdan Went Diving to Launch Dubai Reef, the World’s Largest Marine Development Project

HH Sheikh Hamdan marked the opening of the Dubai Reef in his own special way, by going for a deep dive in the UAE’s waters.

sheikh hamdan dive


A known thrill-seeker, and adventure enthusiast, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai went for a diving expedition to inaugurate the Dubai Reef. First announced in December 2023 at Cop28, Dubai Reef is dubbed the world’s largest marine reef development project. “I was happy to be joined by @RayDalio for an unforgettable diving expedition, marking the inauguration of ‘Dubai Reef’ – the world’s largest marine conservation initiative,” Sheikh Hamdan posted on X, alongside a video of the dive. “This project promises a host of benefits for marine biodiversity, our planet’s health, and economic prosperity. It’s a testament to Dubai’s commitment to sustainability and serves as a blueprint for global environmental projects.”


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Spanning 600 square kilometres across Dubai’s waters, Dubai Reef will see the deployment of 20,000 purpose-built reef modules of various sizes over a four-year period, ultimately exceeding 400,000 cubic metres in volume. The project is a major part of the emirate’s efforts to promote ecological sustainability, and supports the wider strategic goals and ambitions of Dubai and the UAE, including the Dubai Economic Agenda, the UAE’s Green Agenda – 2030, and the UAE Net Zero 2050 strategy. The initiative also falls under Dubai Can, which is spearheaded by the royal and aims to reduce single-use plastic water bottle waste in the city. The key aim? To increase the fish and biomass population by eight times over the next decade, while capturing around seven million tonnes of carbon annually, which is the equivalent of 1.5 million cars.

“The landmark Dubai Reef initiative is a testament to the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai,” Sheikh Hamdan said in a statement. “Reef ecosystems are unique life sources and vital components in the protection of marine life. Dubai Can’s Dubai Reef project will inject vitality into our coastal waters and contribute to global conservation efforts. The project’s significant long-term environmental and socio-economic impacts will serve Dubai’s commitment to ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.”

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