Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (CIHT) Qatar Group organised an online technical seminar on 'Moving to Zero-Emissions Public Transport.' Errol Tan, managing director of Vectio’s UK and Naeem Farooqi, director of Sustainable Transportation & Asset Management Solutions at Wood Plc were the guest speakers. They discussed how Covid-19 has affected public transportation system in Qatar which witnessed a complete shutdown of operations during the initial phases of the pandemic.
The presentation highlighted the shift towards electrified, zero-emissions public transport systems, one of the principal and viable pathways to build a healthier, more economically inclusive global society. Errol presented a comparison of performance, operational expenditure savings, life cycle, air quality and noise benefits of Internal Combustion Engines (ICE) with Electric Vehicles.
Both presenters pointed out various key factors to be considered before implementing full E-mobility scheme. The factors includes assessment of demand, operation, local environments lowering emission, choice of charging strategy and legacy investments such as Overhead Line Equipment (OLE). Suggested success factors for e-mobility scheme were shared with the group, including undertaking feasibility study, carrying out pilot projects, conducting operation simulation and modelling for actual deployment routes, undertaking partnership approach and depot charging infrastructure.
The presentation also highlighted the state of the industry both globally and locally where 98% of the global circulating fleet of electric buses is in China, only 1% is in Europe and the remaining 1 % is in rest of the world. Plans for electrification of public transport in some countries were also highlighted including Qatar’s Ministry of Transport and Communications plan to electrify 25% of bus fleet by 2022.
The presenters also discussed how Qatar seeks to mitigate climate change and its commitment to promote energy efficiency, clean and renewable energy in line with pillar 4 of its National Vision 2030. In closing, the relevance of the technology to Qatar was summarised where e-mobility offers a pathway to reduce transport related emission, opportunities in e-mobility supply chain, accelerates decarbonisation of national grid per National Vision 2030 and synergise with Metro, LRT and autonomous vehicles.