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Dubai gears up to mark Car Free Day 2014
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Dubai gears up to mark Car Free Day 2014

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Dubai Municipality, in collaboration with 61 entities from government and the private sector, has geared up to organise the 5th Car Free Day 2014 on Wednesday, 19th February.

Employees will travel to their job locations using different public transport means such as the Metro, buses and Abra. This was announced in a press conference held at DM's main building in Deira in the presence of senior officials of the major participating government bodies and institutions, Mohammed Al Jarman, Director-General of Emirates Transport, Mohammed Al Zarooni, Director of Dubai Red Crescent, Arif Mubarak, COO of Dubai Real Estate Group and Ahmed Serkal, Chairman of Al Serkal Group.

The initiative is aimed at contributing to the reduction of carbon emissions and spreading awareness about global warming and methods of controlling it.

Having announced the fifth edition of Car Free Day, Hussain Nassir Lootah, Director-General of Dubai Municipality, said that the initiative would be strengthening the partnership with government departments and the private sector in the field of preservation of the environment, spreading the culture of public transportation which in turn contributes to reducing traffic congestion in the Emirate of Dubai.

"We also aim to have a new achievement for Dubai as an eco-friendly city through the registration of this initiative in the name of Dubai, as the initiative gets a huge response every year from the public and government and private sector organisations," Lootah said.

He also suggested the concerned authorities to take all necessary steps to curb the increasing number of vehicles such as reducing the number of cars which can be owned by single owner, setting specific eligibility standards for vehicle ownership, increasing public transport facilities, and increasing the cost of parking and insurance, amongst others.

Mohamed Al Noori, Director of Corporate Marketing and Relations at Dubai Municipality, said that the civic body had first launched the initiative in 2010 in which 1,000 vehicles participated, deducting three tons of carbon emission.

In 2011, the Department of Land and Property, Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Etisalat also joined the Municipality, increasing the number of vehicles to 2,400 and reducing the carbon emission by 4.2 tons.

"In 2012, the participants increased to 18 government and private sector entities, taking 3,500 vehicles off the roads and reducing 10.5 tons of carbon emission," Al Noori said.

"In 2013, total 27 entities joined the initiative and about 5,000 employees from different participating organisations left their cars at home and used public transport to reach their offices, saving the environment from more than 14 tons of carbon dioxide emission," he said.

"This year we expect to take 7,000 cars out of the roads in Dubai during the car free day, deducting 20 tons of carbon emission and our aim in future is to observe Car Free Day with the participation of all government and private organisations," he concluded.

All parking lots of Municipality and other participating organisations will be closed throughout the day. Different eco-friendly exhibitions, shows and programmes will be conducted in the huge car parking space in front of DM headquarters. Attractive prizes will be distributed for the winners in eco-competitions, in addition to the honouring of outstanding eco-friendly initiatives of employees from participating entities.

The participants this year include the Ministry of Environment and Water, Ministry of Public Works, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, Ministry of Social Affairs, Ministry of Justice, Land Department, Etisalat, Dubai Police, GDRFA, DCCI, RTA, Dubai Properties Group, Department of Economic Development, Financial Audit Department, Dubai Mall, Al Bayan, DHA, Dubai Educational Zone, Mohammed Bin Rashid Housing, Dubai Healthcare City, Dubai civil Aviation, American University of Dubai, University of Wollongong Dubai, Emirates Foundation for Cooling Systems, DMI, Dubai Arts and Culture, Al Serkal Group, Radisson Blu Hotel, Public Authority for Youth and Sports Welfare, Department of Finance, Dubai Customs, Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities, Sheikh Zayed Housing Foundation, Awqaf, Minors Affairs Foundation, Dubai Ambulance Services, Civil Defence, Dubai Police Academy, Dubai Courts, Dubai International Financial Centre, U.A.E. Red Crescent Authority, Emirates Transport, Dubai Government School, University of Dubai, Mohammed Bin Rashid School, Umm Suqeim School, Institute of Applied Technology, Holiday Inn, Dubai Sports Council, Al-Ahly, Al Wasl, the U.A.E. Football Association, Dubai Sports City, and Al-Futtaim.

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