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How green is your Gulf?

The ironies of your 7 February issue!

The cover story feature on construction in the Gulf is full of the massive investment in infrastructure and buildings – very exciting and lucrative engineering, but how green or sustainable can it be?

The ICE news column reports on the ICE/IMechE convention in Cairo and its topics of sustainable development and climate change, but makes no reference to the Gulf.

In Viewpoint, Simon Harden wonders whether the boom is sustainable and quotes the WWF report of November 2006 – "the UAE was five times more unsustainable than any other country".

Surely it is self-evidently unsustainable for these small states to support this bubbling bonanza plus all the Las Vegas style sky-scrapered artificial islands, new airports, container terminals and dry docks. And to do all this in the desert!

A challenge certainly, but sustainable – surely not.

EJM HEPPER (F), Uplands, 61 Queens Road, Alton, Hants, GU34 1JG

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