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Sunday 27 February ,2022

The National Library and Archives offered Zayed, The Saadiyat Miracle as a gift to the Majalis

The National Library and Archives offered Zayed, The Saadiyat Miracle as a gift to the Majalis

The National Library and Archives “NLA” of the UAE offered Zayed, The Saadiyat Miracle as a gift to Abu Dhabi Majalis, which are managed by Majalis Affairs Office of the Crown Prince Court.

By providing the Majalis with The Saadiyat Miracle, the NLA aims to spread cultural awareness and review Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s experience in that vital agricultural project, which has proven successful in Saadiyat Island in 1968.

The NLA’s endeavor to provide the Majalis with this book is due to its distinctive national content as it enriches the knowledge of the Majalis’ visitors with a leading agricultural experience that reflects the Founding Father Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s genius, which is documented by the NLA and incorporated within its national mission to provide documented and reliable information.

The NLA offered to the Majalis about 50 copies of The Saadiyat Miracle, which documents a remarkable achievement of the everlasting leader who will remain an example of foresightedness, love of his people and fatherly leadership.

The book in brief

The Saadiyat Miracle book documents Sheikh Zayed’s efforts when he challenged the impossible and the agricultural project in Saadiyat Island succeeded in 1968. This book is one of the NLA’s series of publications that document the UAE’s memory of the achievements made by the Founding Father Sheikh Zayed who elevated the level of the UAE and its citizens so that it became a model for the contemporary state under the umbrella of its wise leadership.

The book tackles Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s efforts in agriculture and reclamation of salty lands in Saadiyat Island when he was the ruler Abu Abu Dhabi. In 1967, he offered money to some of The University of Arizona’s scientists to establish facilities for power, water and food in the island in order to start cultivation and producing fresh vegetables, and using modern technologies for irrigation, electrical power generation and seawater desalination. Saadiyat lands reclamation project attracted a great deal of the world attention as many academic journals and books wrote about it in various languages. Saadiyat is one of Abu Dhabi’s islands that is with white Oolitic sand, and it lacked both water and roads.

The book, authored by Dr. Merle H. Jensen, started with a saying of the Founding Leader Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan: “Give me agriculture and I will give you civilization”. Following the book introduction come the seven chapters as follows:

In Chapter (1) “The Birth of Controlled Environment Agriculture: Power, Water, Food for Desert Communities”, the book tackles the Environmental Research Laboratory, plastic greenhouse development and the highly encouraging results of the horticultural trials.

Chapter (2) talks about the agriculture in the Emirates in the late 1960s. The book highlighted the markets in Abu Dhabi and the vegetables that were sold at that time.

In Chapter (3) “Technology Transfer Begins”, the author recalled the details of the first visit of Mr. Carl Hodges, Director of the Environmental Research Laboratory, to the island and the harsh conditions there. He mentioned the three trainees selected by Sheikh Zayed to accompany Dr. Riley, Project Director, in his flight over the Arctic to Tucson. The trainees were: Abdulla Said Kaddas, Hamad Murshid Tamin and Mohamed Mijrin Seif. This chapter provides details about the greenhouse structure and environment and the power/water production units, etc.

Chapter (4) “Research Solves Horticultural Challenges” explains how to select vegetables varieties and it provides a list of these vegetables.

Chapter (5) “Bountiful Harvest” illustrates the results of the project.

Chapter (6) “Notable Diplomats, Visitors and Experiences” indicates that the Saadiyat project has attracted many diplomats and visitors from the UAE and different countries of the world.

Finally, Chapter (7) “The Lasting Impact” demonstrates that the Saadiyat project had great impact in the growth of Abu Dhabi and the UAE. It also resulted in the enrollment of a number of students in The University of Arizona, and it was the beginning of technologies that started to develop.

The book supported its valuable information with a large number of historical photos, most notably the photos of the Founding Father while he was following up the project stages and development.