Dubai sets up electric vehicle charging stations
Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has inaugurated the Emirate’s first electric vehicle charging station as part of the Smart Dubai strategic plan.
The facility is one of 12 now open to the public, and one of 16 stations that are to be opened during the phase one of the initiative.
The station, which is located at DEWA’s headquarters in Al Garhoud, was inaugurated by a selection of local dignitaries and policymakers, including HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy.
“This station is an important step towards achieving the objectives of the sustainable smart city, and transforming Dubai into the smartest city in the world,” said HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, managing director and chief executive officer of DEWA.
“One of the main factors for the success of smart cities is to provide a smart environment that rationally and sustainably uses resources in an innovative way, by adopting state-of-the-art technologies.
“DEWA has developed a comprehensive strategy for smart grids. Currently, DEWA is implementing three main initiatives. These are connecting solar energy to houses and buildings, smart applications through smart meters and grids, and the infrastructure for vehicle charging stations,” he added.
DEWA intends to install 100 charging stations across Dubai before the end of 2015. To implement the roll-out, the authority is collaborating with car manufacturers, airports, shopping malls, petrol stations, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), and Dubai Municipality.
DEWA is also working with real estate developers, including Emaar and Nakheel, to identify the most appropriate sites for charging stations.
Twelve stations have already been installed at DEWA centres across Dubai, offering the capacity to charge 24 vehicles simultaneously. Another station has been installed in Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO), and two more will be opened in Dubai Design District (D3) by March 2015 as part of the initial phase of the initiative.
During phase two of the project, 84 charging stations of different types will be installed in Dubai. These will include ‘fast’, ‘public’, and ‘home’ charging stations.
Fast stations will be located at petrol stations, and will enable the charging of electric vehicles in 30 minutes. Public charging stations will allow vehicles to be charged within four hours, and it will take between six to eight hours to charge a vehicle from a home station.
“This pioneering initiative will greatly support DEWA’s efforts to reduce the carbon footprint, protect the environment, and drive Dubai’s sustainable development forward,” said Al Tayer.
“We are confident this project will have the full support of Dubai residents, as well as government and private organisations,” he concluded.
The question now is who is going to use the chargers. The BMW i8 hybrid is officially available in the Middle East and a Tesla has been spotted in Dubai, though the US car maker has no dealer network here. The RTA has also announced plans this week to create a fleet of electric buses.