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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 December 2018

Electric car on 34,000km road trip recharges at Dubai International

A Dutch clean energy initiative saw a battery-powered vehicle on a marathon expedition call off to refuel at DXB, helping to boost the emirate's green mobility strategy.
The electric car that is on a 34,000km zero-emission road trip (right) stopped by at Dubai International to refuel and support Dubai Airports’ green mobility initiative.  Courtesy : Dubai airports
The electric car that is on a 34,000km zero-emission road trip (right) stopped by at Dubai International to refuel and support Dubai Airports’ green mobility initiative. Courtesy : Dubai airports

An electric car that is on a 34,000 kilometre zero-emission road trip – from the Netherlands to Australia – stopped by at Dubai International last week to refuel at DXB’s fully operational charging stations and support Dubai Airports’ green mobility initiative.

Wiebe Wakker, a Dutch environmental campaigner, is driving his electric car from the Netherlands to Australia – and has already traversed 22 countries. The trip is part of his project Plug Me In to promote sustainable ideas and popularise electric vehicles.

“A few weeks ago I was at the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi,” Mr Wakker said on his website blog. “I was approached by two people from Dubai International Airport. They told me they want to promote electric mobility and wanted to organise an event to raise awareness. They found my story interesting and invited me to speak at this event.

“I could park my car right next to Terminal 3 of Dubai Airport, which was already an amazing opportunity. There were three other EV’s: a Renault Zoe; a Prius; and the Tesla Model X. Representatives from Toyota and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority [Dewa] were talking about their vision on sustainable mobility and I had the honour to be the final speaker at the event, which took place inside the terminal.”

The event also raised awareness on the environmental benefits of cleaner technology among the thousands of passengers that pass through DXB by displaying three electric vehicles at DXB.

“The green mobility initiative launched as part of the Dubai Plan 2021 identifies the deployment of electric and hybrid vehicles as a potential approach to achieving sustainability targets and help Dubai emerge as a smart integrated city,” said Michael Ibbitson, the executive vice president for technology and infrastructure at Dubai Airports.

“We are already helping to promote hybrid vehicles with two fully operational charging stations at DXB Terminals 1, 2 and at Dubai World Central, while more stations are under planning,” he added.

Organised in line with the Green Mobility Initiative introduced by the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy to adapt cleaner technologies and reduce the dependence on fossil fuels, the event was supported by Dewa and Toyota.

The overall Dubai target for the share of hybrid and EVs is at least 2 per cent penetration rate by 2020 and 10 per cent by 2030 of total vehicles registered in Dubai. This would result in estimated fuel savings of about 3 billion litres or 5 per cent of total consumption by 2030.

chnelson@thenational.ae

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