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RIYADH: Imam Turki bin Abdullah Royal Natural Reserve Development Authority is participating at the co-current Saudi Green Initiative Gallery and UN Climate Change Conference — COP28 — in Dubai, today. 

The reserve will showcase its drone-based program, the biggest of its kind, in protecting biodiversity in Saudi Arabia, for being more effective and efficient in environmental activities and having a lower carbon footprint, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday. 

It has already contributed to raising the efficiency of environmental monitoring and protection teams by more than 220 percent.

Drones have also helped to cut carbon emissions by more than 66 percent by reducing dependence on fossil fuel-powered vehicles.

An interactive screen will also display details of the pioneering Vegetation Cover Evaluation Project, which uses remote-sensor technologies, as well as many initiatives dedicated to expanding the vegetation cover and afforestation. 

All of ITBA’s projects and initiatives are fully aligned with the national goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, and dedicated to preserving the vegetation cover and biodiversity, including rare and endangered species, as part of broader environmental protection efforts.

The Saudi Green Initiative aims to reduce carbon emissions, plant 10 billion trees in the Kingdom over the next decades and protect 30 percent of the Kingdom’s land and marine areas by 2030, as part of the Kingdom’s efforts to reach carbon neutrality by 2060.

It is worth noting that IBTA spans more than 91,500 sq km, making it the second largest royal reserve in the Kingdom.

Known for its picturesque nature and biodiversity, the reserve is home to 138 wild species, including Rhim Gazelles, Oryxes, and more than 179 wild plants, including Ziziphus, Acacia and Arta trees.

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