Dubai: Dubai Metro’s increasing popularity has meant that more people are switching from cars to trains for their daily commute, helping Dubai reduce up to 943 tonnes of carbon emissions every day.
According to the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), which celebrates Dubai’s ninth Public Transport Day on Thursday, Dubai Metro helped reduce 341,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) in 2017, enough to light up 46,000 homes for an entire year.
As the RTA celebrates its 13th anniversary on Thursday with a series of activities and prizes designed to encourage more people to choose mass transit means for their daily travel, we offer you an insight into the impact its biggest project has had so far.
One of the biggest infrastructure and mass transit projects in the region, Dubai Metro has revolutionised the way both residents and tourists move around the city, while also playing a significant role in conserving energy and reducing carbon emissions.
“Dubai Metro is an environmentally friendly means of transport. RTA has implemented a number of measures to make the stations and other facilities environmentally friendly as well. Design and implementation of the metro stations’ thermal insulation systems take advantage of the movement of the sun and shade to regulate the energy consumed for air conditioning and lighting,” said a senior RTA official.
Since its launch in September 2009, the world’s largest driverless train network has served 1.2 billion riders, transporting around 550,000 passengers daily.
Apart from helping people switch from cars to trains, Dubai Metro also boasts of several other green features including energy efficient escalators in the stations that come to a stop when not in use, while the train itself runs on electricity, the usage of which is regulated automatically with the changing speed of the trains, helping reduce power consumption.
Another interesting sustainable feature of the metro is that the electricity generated from the trains’ braking is also fully re-used.
“The RTA is committed to environmental sustainability and places considerable importance to protecting the environment and saving natural resources, by adopting the highest international standards in optimising energy and water consumption,” added the RTA official.
Apart from saving CO2, the metro’s eco-friendly features also helped save 86 million litres of water, while saving Dh4.8 million last year.
With the increasing popularity, the metro’s daily ridership has seen a steep rise over the last nine years.
“The number of daily average passengers has jumped from 61,000 at its launch on 09.09.09 to over 550,000 by the end of 2017, compared with about 523,000 riders in 2016, providing affordable public transport and improving the traffic conditions,” said the official.
Catering to the growing demand, the RTA is currently carrying out an extention of the Dubai Metro, with a 15km line branching out from Nakheel Harbour and Tower Station on the Red Line.
Construction works on all Route 2020 metro viaducts are scheduled for completion in the second half of November, while the first of the new Dubai Metro trains is expected to arrive in Dubai later this month.
The trial run of the trains will start in February 2020, while the new route is expected to open for public by March 2020.
Complementing the metro is the Dubai Tram, which was used by 6 million riders in 2017, with average daily ridership of about 17,000.
The tram helped save 1,928 tonnes of CO2 in 2017, an average of 5.28 tonnes per day, which is equivalent to energy used to power 262 homes for one year.
Launched in November 2014, Dubai Tram lays claim to several world firsts. It is the first turnkey tramway in the Middle East, the world’s first with full-line third-rail ground based Aesthetic Power Supply, the first with automatically synchronised station stops, and the first air-conditioned stations.
Currently operating on a route of 10.6 km, the tram’s further expansion is under study, and according to RTA, all stations of the future project will be LEED Gold certified.
Dubai’s mult-modal public transport system has become the backbone of mobility in the city, serving 551 million riders in 2017, with the public transit share touching 17 per cent last year.
Metro savings in 2017
8.7 MWh of electricity,
86 million litres of water,
4,217 tonnes of carbon dioxide
Dh4.8 million in costs
Tram savings in 2017
1,928 tonnes of CO2
5.28 tonnes on average per day
262 homes powered for one year
551 million public transport commuters in 2017
410 million mass transit riders so far this year
1.2 billion metro users since 2009
550,000 average daily metro users
17,000 average daily tram riders
17 per cent share of public transport in Dubai