The National Committee on SDGs launches “Road to Sustainability” to enhance community awareness of global sustainability goals


The UAE‘s National Committee on SDGs, in partnership with Emirates Transport, organized the “Road to Sustainability” campaign as part of the UAE government’s agenda to achieve the goals of ‘the year of sustainability,’  and within the framework of initiatives to promote community awareness of global sustainable development goals and their imperative importance to ensure a better future for societies. The awareness campaign marks a significant stride in the UAE’s unwavering dedication to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, serving as tangible evidence of the numerous accomplishments attained by local authorities in enhancing the quality of life across diverse segments of society.

The ambitious campaign, which will roll out until the end of 2024, involves many stakeholders at the national level, aiming to raise awareness of the global goals of sustainable development. It relies heavily on the government and private organizations’ efforts to support those goals and promote the UAE community’s participation in achieving them. The initiative supports the “Year of Sustainability” guidelines announced by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, under the slogan “Today for Tomorrow’. Furthermore, the campaign aligns with the UAE’s preparations for hosting the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (Cope 28) in late November of this year.

Abdulla Lootah: The campaign embodies the UAE Government’s approach to motivating members of society to adopt a sustainable way of life.

Abdulla Nasser Lootah, the Deputy Minister of Cabinet Affairs for Competitiveness and Experience Exchange, Vice-Chairman of the National Committee on SDGs, asserted that the campaign reflects the UAE Government’s approach to motivating community members to adopt a sustainable way of life to help build a better world for future generations.

Abdulla Lootah added that the “Road to Sustainability” campaign echoes our strong belief that any potential change starts with a step and that spreading knowledge, raising the level of interest, and community participation is the best way to achieve positive change while emphasizing the impact of the active partnerships with “Emirates Transport,” government organizations and national private sector companies for the success of this promising initiative.

Alex Rentier: Sustainability is gaining an increasing attention in the company’s culture and future directions.

 On the other hand, Emirates Transport’s CEO, Alex Rentier, expressed the company’s full endorsement for this national campaign, and a strong feeling of pride in being its first initiator, at a time when debates on environmental and climate change issues are still ongoing locally and globally, driven by a heightened sense of awareness of the crucial importance of consolidating the sustainability approach. Rentier stressed that these issues are gaining increasing attention not only within the company’s culture but also in its current and future directions, calling on all parties to abide by the objectives of the campaign, which represents an additional opportunity to renew the commitment to sustainability requirements, thereby reflecting the company’s vision, mission and institutional values.

An environment-friendly bus that roams around the country to promote awareness of the importance of sustainability.

The campaign was launched at the Emirates Transport Headquarters premises in Dubai, in the presence of Abdulla Nasser Lootah, Deputy Minister of Cabinet Affairs for Competitiveness and Experience Exchange, Vice-Chairman of the National Committee on SDGs, Shatha Al-Hashimi, Advisor at the Government Experience Exchange Office, and Amna Al-Abdulla, Corporate Communication & Strategic Relations Team Lead at the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre. The attendees were also accompanied by the General Secretariat of the National Committee for SDGs’ team, and Emirates Transport CEO, Alex Rentier, Abdullah Al Moussa, Acting Executive Director of the School Transport Sector, and Amer Al Shehhi, Director of Operations Division in Abu Dhabi, in addition to a number company and officials.  

The event’s agenda included a presentation on the history of Emirates Transport since its inception and a brief about its services and remarkable efforts in the field of sustainability, followed by the exchange of honorary shields and gifts, before showcasing the electric bus to the guests and taking them on a short trial tour onboard. The first sustainable trip kicked-off from the company headquarters and is expected to continue its mission until the end of next year. The company was keen to secure the transportation of the campaign participants on the electric bus to the rest of the stations and destinations in various regions of the country.

As for the technical details of the electric bus provided to serve the campaign’s goals, Khaled Shukur, Director of the Quality, Environment, Safety, and Occupational Health Department at Emirates Transport, explained that the vehicle can accommodate 41 passengers in addition to the driver, powered by a battery with a capacity of 315 kilowatts. This battery can be charged within an hour and forty minutes (with a 180-kilowatt charger), with 300 kilometers of estimated range on a single charge. Shukur pointed out that the bus is currently under testing, where a comprehensive evaluation of its performance in local conditions will be conducted later in preparation for a more comprehensive implementation of electric buses in the company’s fleet in the near future.

Shukur also added that the electric bus is in line with the campaign’s spirit of sustainability, in retaining the concept of zero-emissions, compared to the emissions produced by internal combustion engines, such as carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), particulate matter (PM) and greenhouse gases (GHG) such as methane ( CH4), which is more efficient in energy conversion, as its carbon footprint does not exceed 32% to 38% (emissions resulting from electricity production) compared to the carbon footprint of a conventional fuel bus. It also adopts a regenerative braking mechanism that saves 70% to 75% of the energy wasted in braking and reduces noise pollution due to its low noise compared to buses with internal combustion engines.

It is worth noting that Emirates Transport’s eagerness to protect the environment and its keen interest in sustainability issues dates back many years. It went beyond the norms of awareness, to permeate different levels of its business. In this sense, the company has been proactive to establish an environment-friendly investment approach, through the launch of several projects with a positive impact on the environment, including the Union Centre for converting vehicles to work with compressed natural gas, which has been providing services to government and private agencies and individuals since 2010, in addition to the Dry Wash project, which started providing services in 2013, in addition to the Tyre Retreading Unit which was launched in 2014. This is in addition to the electric car rental services, and the recent qualitative partnerships in this field, and other initiatives that enhance sustainability in the company’s internal work environment, such as the printing management initiative, scrapping and recycling initiatives, and selling technical workshops waste.

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