Qatari authorities have announced plans to convert 35% of its fleet’s total cars and 100% of its public transportation buses to electric, the Ministry of Transportation said.
The Qatar National Vision 2030 seeks to convert Qatar into a nation capable of attaining sustainable development, according to Sheikh Faleh bin Nasser bin Ahmed bin Ali Al Thani, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.
“The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change has set an ambitious strategy to achieve sustainable development which relies on clean energy, solar power and other renewable energy expanding electric transportation and limiting the use of environmental pollutants,” said the minister.
“The government of Qatar has worked over the last period to encourage all segments of civil society to learn about the local ecosystem and how to preserve it,” he added.
With a capacity for 478 vehicles, the Lusail Bus Depot established a record as the largest electric bus depot in the Guinness World Records Book last year. It includes parking shades powered by top-tier solar panels, making it the first such centre in the region to rely on solar energy. It has 11,000 PV solar panels that can produce four megawatts of power per day to supply its buildings.
Separately, the 800 megawatt Al Kharsaah Power Plant has emerged as Qatar’s most successful renewable energy plant.
All buses operating in The Pearl are now electric, Mowasalat (Karwa) announced in March. The expansion includes eight Peak Vehicle Requirement (PVR) buses that are currently in service along three Metrolink routes.
Sustainability efforts is very much rooted in Qatar’s society, with efforts by young people to get closer to a greener nation.
The Middle East’s first-ever Carbon Footprint tracking application was launched in April 2022 by the Arab Youth Climate Movement Qatar (AYCMQ) in commemoration of Earth Day.
The application is called ‘AYCMQA’ and is available for download on both the Apple Store and Google Play.
To calculate the approximate footprint for each household, users are required to put in information in the designated logs on the application. This includes their type of housing, consumption of gas or electricity for cooking, the number of cars a home has, among other details.
‘Exemplar green state’
Once the first stage of the household carbon footprint is measured and properly calculated, individuals will receive a unique code to use for future measurements and comparisons of their footprint.
The Gulf country was even used as an exemplar green and wealthy state by experts.
Eric Nuttall, a partner and senior portfolio manager at Ninepoint Partners said Qatar has grown its gross domestic product (GDP) tenfold, amassed a sovereign wealth fund worth more than $450 billion, and used the revenue from its liquified natural gas (LNG) to build brand-new cities with infrastructure that is the envy of the world, or at least most western countries.
Nuttall argued that instead of “vilifying” oil and natural gas industries, Gulf nations are promoting them to expand their economies and gradually diversify away from reliance on hydrocarbons while making large investments in alternative energy.
“Could Canada and the environment be better off adopting a similar all-of-the-above strategy instead of its current either/or approach?,” he asked.
The long-term strategy of the Canadian government for the oil and gas industry could benefit from adopting at least part of Qatar’s and Saudi Arabia’s energy realism, Nuttall claimed.