According to the Dubai Media Office, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has signed off on a deal to procure 554 environmentally-friendly hybrid vehicles. The move is part of a masterplan to curb pollution created by Dubai’s taxi fleet.

Hybrid vehicles feature a combustion engine and electric motors, and presently make up 11% of the Dubai Taxi Corporation (DTC)’s fleet. The DTC says it aims to increase the proportion of hybrid vehicles in its fleet to 17% by the end of this year.

“This step has been taken in implementation of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, for adopting power-efficient solutions with a positive bearing on humans and development projects of all sorts. The directives call for nurturing a safe, clean, attractive and sustainable environment capable of enhancing the image and profile of Dubai.

The directives call for nurturing a safe, clean, attractive and sustainable environment capable of enhancing the image and profile of Dubai.

The step illustrates RTA’s commitment to the master plan calling for curbing carbon emissions from the taxi sector by 2 percent, as required by the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and the Green Economy initiative,” said Mattar Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of RTA.

According to the statement, the RTA aims to convert 50 percent of Dubai taxicabs to hybrid vehicles by 2021. The process will take place in phases: 2,375 vehicles by 2018, 3,167 by 2019, and 3,959 vehicles by 2020.

Al Tayer says that hybrid taxis offer a 30 percent improvement in fuel economy, and simultaneously reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent.

This article was originally published here on meconstructionnews.com