Emirates Literature Foundation and Goumbook teamed up this year to make the Emirates Literature Festival plastic free, banning all single-use plastic and installing a free water fountain, which is estimated to have saved more than 11,000 disposable plastic bottles and 168,000kg of CO2.
HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Emirates Literature Foundation, said: “The Emirates Literature Foundation and the Festival keep going from strength to strength, having a proven positive impact on our diverse community. Sustainability is of vital importance to us all, and therefore a crucial conversation to be had at the Festival. We are in a unique position to inform, entertain, engage and lead by example.”
Goumbook was able to support the Foundation’ sustainability efforts under its Drop It – Rethink plastic initiative, introducing sustainable suppliers from water filtration companies and alternative packaging solutions to carbon neutral and recycled papers for high quality printing.
Isobel Abulhoul OBE, CEO and founder of Emirates Literature Foundation, said: “Our very reason for being here as a Foundation is to improve lives. We know the joy of reading gives people better opportunities in life, improves health and happiness, and gives countless other benefits. But it is all meaningless if we allow our planet to continue its rapid decline. We have been making a difference in people’s lives for 12 years. As a Festival that has grown out of its community to become one of the best-loved literary festivals in the world, we will continue to spearhead the conversations that bring real change. We don’t claim to have all the answers, but we bring together the people that can help us find them.
As part of the partnership with Goumbook, the Festival invited over 20 students – all Drop It Youth Ambassadors, who had the opportunity to meet with local and international authors and all the event’s visitors, creating awareness about plastic pollution and ways to reduce single use plastic consumption.
Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, The Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature is held with the support of founding partners Emirates and Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, and will return for its 12th edition 4-9 February 2020 at InterContinental Dubai – Festival City. The homegrown Festival brings people of all ages and backgrounds together with authors from around the world to promote the love of reading, writing and great conversation.