Dubai Can saves 18 million bottles in two years in the battle against single-use plastics

The emirate has now installed 50 water fountains with a further 30 planned by the end of the year

Dubai Can says it has reduced single-use plastic usage in the emirate by the equivalent of more than 18 million bottles. Photo: Dubai Can
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The green initiative Dubai Can has reduced the use of single-use plastic by the equivalent of more than 18 million bottles, the government said on Thursday.

Launched in February 2022 by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai, the project has prompted more than 50 water fountains installed across the city, including public parks, beaches and tourist attractions. It aims to encourage people to carry refillable bottles.

Dubai Can water stations are now located in various neighbourhoods including Kite Beach, Dubai Marina, JLT, Downtown Dubai, Dubai Harbour, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai Festival City and Khawaneej.

Further public water fountains are planned to be installed in the city, with a pledge to introduce 30 more by the end of the year.

Dubai's Department of Economy and Tourism said it aims to motivate residents and visitors to use refillable water bottles and install water filters in their homes, offices and schools.

“We have seen consistent engagement with Dubai Can across the city, and the positive impact the initiative has made over the past two years,” said Yousuf Lootah, acting chief executive of the corporate strategy and performance sector at Dubai's Department of Economy and Tourism.

“By reducing plastic waste, we are protecting our oceans, wildlife and natural landscapes, and by choosing reusable options like our public water stations, we are promoting a healthier lifestyle and reducing our carbon footprint.”

Hundreds of companies, from both the government and private sector, have supported the Dubai Can project.

“We are proud to celebrate Dubai Can's two-year milestone and the remarkable impact it has on the community,” said Simonida Subotic, vice president at Talabat UAE.

“As a tech company, we embrace innovative solutions that create shared value for the public and facilitate the adoption of positive every day practices.

“Being in a country such as the UAE, which is spearheading sustainability efforts in the region, enables private companies to play an active role in driving behavioural change.”

The government issued a nationwide ban on single-use plastics earlier this year.

Single-use plastic bags are now banned across all emirates, while it will be prohibited to import plastic cutlery, drinks cups, styrofoam and boxes from January 1, 2026.

The move aims to protect the environment and be of benefit to consumers.

Watch: Palestinian couple recycle plastic waste to create eco-friendly garden

Palestinian couple recycle plastic waste to help create eco-friendly garden

In this aerial view taken on March 29, 2023, Salama Badwan, a 40-year-old Palestinian man, and his wife Alaa, 40, tend to Aloe Vera plants grown on their roof to be used for oil extraction and soap-making, at their home in Deir al-Balah in the centre of the Gaza Strip. With scarce opportunities in the Gaza Strip, which has been under a crippling Israeli-led blockade since the Islamist movement Hamas took power in 2007, and poverty hitting a rate of 53 percent according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, many are finding alternative ways to make a living. (Photo by MAHMUD HAMS / AFP)
Updated: March 14, 2024, 5:46 PM