Wednesday 31, August 2016

Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: Delegates from across the globe will unite in Abu Dhabi this November to celebrate women’s achievements in the nuclear industry at the 24th Global Women in Nuclear (WiN) conference.

To be held at the Fairmont, Bab al Bahr hotel between 20th – 23rd November, the conference is held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, President of the General Women’s Union, Chairwoman of Motherhood and Childhood Supreme Council and hosted by the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC).

Revealed today, the panel of speakers includes internationally-renowned names who represent the top of their fields in the industry. The speakers will address an audience of professionals working in all applications of nuclear science and technology, with a particular focus on the role of women and their increasing participation as professionals within the nuclear energy sector.

Dr. Se-Moon Park, President of Women in Nuclear Global, commented, “hosting the WiN Global conference in Abu Dhabi this year holds profound significance. Not only will we be making history by hosting it in an Arab nation for the first time, but the UAE is actively committed to using the peaceful application of nuclear energy to address climate change. In such a historically oil-rich region, that shows bold determination in reducing carbon emissions and ensuring long-term energy sustainability.”

“I am very proud of the commitment and dedication of the teams involved in securing the 24th WiN Annual Conference to be held here in Abu Dhabi,” said H.E. Mohammed Al Hammadi, ENEC CEO. As the first nation in the Middle East to host the event, we are looking forward to welcoming a significant presence of international nuclear professionals to the UAE. At ENEC, women currently make up nearly 20% of our employees working both at the Barakah site and in our Head Office and we continue to build on this with initiatives such as the ENEC WiN Chapter- the first chapter of its kind in the Middle East which was established by ENEC. We are, therefore, very proud to be hosting the forthcoming WiN Global Annual Conference.”

The four-day agenda features a robust program of conferences, workshops, technical tours and networking events. A multinational delegation of speakers will cover a broad spectrum of thought- provoking and informative topics related to nuclear energy including: gender equality in the nuclear industry, multiculturalism in nuclear energy companies and regulatory issues.

“The 24th WiN Global conference represents the ideal forum for us to not only lead the agenda on the peaceful use of nuclear energy among an international community but to elevate and inspire women in nuclear fields,” said Hasna Al Blooshi, Women in Nuclear Chairperson for the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation and Nuclear Performance Improvement Manager for ENEC’s operating subsidiary company, Nawah Energy. “Women have always played a vital role in the UAE’s development and ENEC is proud of their immense contribution to the great strides the UAE is making in nuclear energy, locally,” Al Blooshi added.

The list of confirmed panelists includes key nuclear energy leaders from across the world, including:

Adriènne Kelbie, Chief Executive, Office for Nuclear Regulation (UK)
Aayda Al Shehhi, Radiation Safety Department Director, Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation
Kristine L. Svinicki, Commissioner, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)Agneta Rising, Director General, World Nuclear Association

Educating women on the safe application of nuclear energy and nurturing careers in the field are critical tenets to the future success of ENEC’s nuclear program. Currently, 27 percent of students in ENEC’s educational programs are female and the percentage of female students increases to 36 percent in the Higher Diploma in Nuclear Technology program.
Highlighting the value of a strong educational nuclear program in the UAE, Maryam Qasem, Head of Nuclear Fuel Fabrication Procurement at ENEC said: “Being one of the forerunners in the UAE’s nuclear program I take personal responsibility in motivating and paving the way for young people, especially women, to take the lead and contribute to the development of nuclear energy in the UAE. My main message to the students and people that I meet along my professional journey is that embracing nuclear energy is a vital step in development to meet the needs of the present, take care of the needs of the future and ultimately ensure long-term energy sustainability.”
By 2020, ENEC will need approximately 2,500 employees to operate its four nuclear reactors at Barakah in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi, with 60 percent of these roles to be filled by Emiratis.

The 24th WiN Global Conference is the latest milestone for the ENEC WiN UAE chapter, established in 2014. As the first chapter to be formed in the Middle East, it has since played an active role in recent annual conferences in Australia (2014) and Austria (2015).