A sustainability pavilion powered by over 1,000 photovoltaic solar panels opened its doors to visitors at the postponed Expo 2020 in Dubai on Thursday, offering visitors an interactive journey inside humanity’s relationship with nature and urging them to consider their impact on the world.
The pavilion, dubbed ‘Terra,’ is intended to be net-zero in terms of its energy and water requirements, with its huge solar panel covered roof and giant ‘energy tree’ structures set to help it reach that goal.
Greenery and wild animals sculptures cover the outside of the pavilion where visitors can witness the start of the timeline of humans’ changing relationship with nature, from flourishing forests and clean oceans to land and water full of plastic and pollution.
The pavilion will be open to visitors until April 10, with the openings of ‘Alef,’ the Mobility Pavilion and ‘The World of Opportunities,’ the Opportunity Pavilion, set to follow. All visitors must pre-book a specific time window to access the pavilion, with online tickets sold for 25 dirhams (€5.61/$6.81).
The World Expo was originally set to be held between October 20, 2020 and April 10, 2020, but it was subsequently postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, although organisers have maintained the name Expo 2020.
The key theme of the pavilion, sustainability, is also a pressing topic for the United Arab Emirates, which faces challenges including water scarcity and rising sea levels brought about by global warming, while around 30 percent of its economy is based on oil and gas production according to OPEC data.