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Tuesday 09 November ,2021

The National Archives launches the book "Zayed, The Saadiyat Miracle" in (Sharjah Book 2021)

The National Archives launches the book "Zayed, The Saadiyat Miracle" in (Sharjah Book 2021) which highlights Sheikh Zayed’s great interest and ingenuity in the field of agriculture, and documents details of the Saadiyat project in 1968

The National Archives launched its latest publication (Zayed The Saadiyat Miracle) through its participating platform in the Sharjah International Book Fair.

The book depicts Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Ruler of Abu Dhabi’s efforts in the agriculture and reclamation of the arid saline lands of Saadiyat Island in 1967, as he recruited and funded some scientists from the University of Arizona to build energy, water, and food facilities on the island; For the production of fresh vegetables, and the use of modern irrigation, and electricity generating, and distillation technologies. The Saadiyat land reclamation project attracted great international interest and attention, and was reported and praised in many scientific journals and books in various languages.

The book begins with Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s memorable qoute: "Give me agriculture, I give you civilization." Followed by the introduction by His Excellency Dr. Abdullah Mohammed Alraisi, Director General of National Archives, where he stressed that Sheikh Zayed invited the University of Arizona’s Research station Director to produce fresh vegetables in controlled environment greenhouses in Abu Dhabi, and Saadiyat was chosen. This project, which started in the fall of 1968, is one of the oldest American projects in Abu Dhabi, and in 1970 the " Arid Land Research Center " erected a prominent sign for the island visitors bearing a wonderful message stating that the center was "established for the people of Abu Dhabi" with a grant to the University of Arizona by Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

His Excellency also states in the book’s prologue that the Saadiyat Project is one of many projects initiated and implemented by Sheikh Zayed, proving his ability to make the impossible possible. Whoever contemplates that project realizes that it is a real miracle.

The following seven chapters of the book: First: The emergence of controlled environment agriculture: energy, water and food for desert communities, where the book addresses the environmental research laboratory, the greenhouse development, and the promising gardening experiments’ results. The second chapter: Agriculture in the Emirates in the late 1960s of, sheds light on Abu Dhabi markets, and the vegetables that were sold then.

In the third chapter: “The Beginning of Technology shift,” the author recalls the details of the first visit of Carl Hodges, Director of the Environmental Research Laboratory to the island, and the harsh conditions there, he mentions the three trainees chosen by Sheikh Zayed to accompany Dr. Riley, the Project Manager on a trip to Tucson via the North Pole. they were: Abdullah Saeed Kadas, Hamad Murshid Tamin, and Muhammed Mujren Saif, and provides details on the green-house and its environment, as well as the energy and water production units, etc.

In the fourth chapter: "the research provides a solution to the horticulture challenges" the book enumerates the vegetable varieties and states how they were selected. The fifth chapter: "A bountiful harvest" highlights the project outcome and results. And the sixth chapter: "Eminent Diplomats, Visitors, and Experiences," shows how the Saadiyat project has attracted many diplomats and visitors from the UAE and around the world.


And the last chapter: "The Lasting Impact" shows that Saadiyat project had a great impact and resulted in the UAE and Abu Dhabi development, and in a number of UAE students’ enrollment at the University of Arizona. The project was an inception of new technologies that continued to develop .

The book enriched its valuable information, with many historical photographs, most notably of which was that of Sheikh Zayed’s following the project’s development stages.

Book Title: Zayed, the Saadiyat miracle

Published by: The National Archives, Abu Dhabi, 163 pages (large cut)

Author: Dr. Merle Jensen

Translated by: National Archives