Saudi Arabia green buildings

26 July 2011

Six individuals pushing the development of energy-efficient structures in the kingdom

Abdulrahman al-Motrif

Position Director, Smart Buildings and Campus Technologies, Higher Education Ministry

Biography Abdulrahman al-Motrif is leading the Higher Education Ministry’s plans to build energy efficiency campuses in the kingdom. The ministry was awarded a Silver Certification from the US-based Smart Buildings Institute for its headquarters in Riyadh. Al-Motrif earlier worked as the information and communications technology director for the Tatweer education programme and as the dean for e-learning and distance learning at King Saud University in Riyadh. Al-Motrif is also the assistant professor of information and technology and educational computing at King Saud University. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in computer information processing from the US’ Southern Illinois University in 1993. In 1995, he completed a master’s in computer-based education. In 2000, he finished a doctorate in instructional technology from Ohio University in the US.

Contact Tel: (+966) 5 441 5555     

Basem al-Shihabi

Position Managing partner, Omrania & Associates

Biography Basem al-Shihabi is the managing partner and founder of local architects Omrania & Associates. He is responsible for overall management of the company and is actively involved with the design and construction management activities. The firm was set up in 1973 and has carried out design work on several green buildings in kingdom in recent years. This includes working in partnership with the US’ HOK to design the Capital Market Authority’s headquarters building at King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh. The building is designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) accreditation. Al-Shihabi graduated with a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Cairo in 1967 and a doctorate in landscape architecture from the UK’s Edinburgh University in 1970.

Contact Tel: (+966) 1 462 2888

Faisal al-Fadl

Position President, Faisal al-Fadl Partners

Biography Faisal al-Fadl is the founder and president of local architecture firm Faisal al-Fadl Partners. Set up in 2000, the firm advises on architecture, engineering and construction for green buildings projects. Al-Fadl is a founding member of Saudi Arabia’s Green Buildings Council. Al-Fadl graduated with a master’s degree in architecture from the US’ Savannah College of Art & Design in 1990. He also completed a postgraduate degree in urban and regional planning in 1995. Al-Fadl has designed, planned and supervised building projects worth more than $15bn. He recently worked with a team of architects from the Middle East and Europe to design a competition entry for the 50,000 square-metre Riyadh Municipality headquarters building. Al-Fadl is a member of the Saudi Council of Engineers and an associate member of the American Institute of Architects.

Contact Tel: (+966) 1 488 8592

Saleh Alawaji

Position Deputy minister for electricity

Biography Saleh Alawaji has been deputy minister for electricity at the Water and Electricity Ministry since 2003. Previously, he was assistant deputy minister for electricity. Alawaji started his career in standardisation for the Saudi Arabian Standards Organisation in 1982. A decade later, Alawaji moved into the area of renewable energy, energy conservation and energy efficiency. His various roles included three years as director of the Energy Research Institute at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology in Riyadh. Alawaji is also chairman of Saudi Electricity Company, the main provider of electricity in the kingdom. From 2005 to 2008, he also chaired the board of the GCC Interconnection Authority, the body responsible for the integrated regional power grid. Alawaji has a postgraduate degree in electrical engineering (power systems) from Strathclyde University in Glasgow in the UK.

Contact Tel: (+966) 1 205 2616  

Hisham Ali Mortada

Position Professor of architecture, College of Environmental Design, King Abdulaziz University

Biography Hisham Mortada has been professor of architecture at the College of Environmental Design in Jeddah since 1997. He graduated with a degree in architecture from King Abdulaziz University in 1982. Mortada went on to complete a master’s in architecture at Pennsylvania State University in the US in 1988. He finished his doctorate at the UK’s University of Edinburgh in 1992. Mortada gained early experience with UK architects D+Arch, before becoming director general of urban planning at Jeddah Municipality in 1994. In 1995, he became the deputy mayoral assistant for urban planning affairs. From 1993 to 2000, he was urban planning adviser for Mecca, and from 2003 to 2004, was the minister’s adviser for urban affairs for the Hajj Ministry. From 1999 to 2007, Mortada worked as an architect and urban planner in Jeddah.

Contact Tel: (+966) 2 640 2000

Majda Aburas

Position Deputy executive director, Saudi Environmental Society (Sens)

Biography Majda Aburas is deputy executive director of Sens, a non-governmental organisation set up in 2006 by the environment minister to assist the government in environmental initiatives and policy. This includes improving the energy efficiency of buildings throughout the kingdom. Aburas graduated with a doctorate in environmental microbiology and biotechnology from the UK’s Surrey University in 2009. In addition to her role at Sens, Aburas is a lecturer in the microbiology department at the King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, covering topics including pollution, microbiology and biology. Aburas is a fellow of the US-based International Federation of Professional and Business Women. She is also a member of the Jeddah Governorate Higher Female Committee, the National Research Centre in Egypt and a board member of the Saudi Aids Society.

Contact Tel: (+966) 2 699 6193

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