Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Sustainability specialist Farnek Consulting helps Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort reach sustainability milestone
Anantara Desert Resort proves green credentials
Sustainability specialist Farnek Consulting helps Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort reach sustainability milestone
The Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara, which is located in the Liwa desert, in Abu Dhabi, has been awarded international Green Globe Certification (GGC), following a comprehensive sustainability audit conducted by Farnek Consulting, GGC’s preferred partner in the Middle East.
The 206-room hotel scored highly in all areas. The room management system which controls air conditioning and lighting has so far this year delivered a 22% reduction in electricity costs and there has been a 37% reduction in propane (LPG).
In addition the hotel has launched a waste segregation and recycling room, which creates awareness among all members of staff. The hotel now recycles 13% (an increase of 7%) of its overall garbage including plastic, glass, paper, cardboard and cooking oil. The hotel also has its own onsite sewerage treatment plant, drastically reducing water consumption, by reusing grey water to irrigate the hotel grounds.
According to Wael Soueid, general manager of the The Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara, each individual hotel can make a difference and collectively they can have a very positive impact, but management and staff have to remain committed.
“Sustainability is not a fad or a project it has to become integral to the operational procedure. We are a desert resort and whenever I look out of my hotel window, I am given a reminder of just how precious our water resources are. So naturally we are all acutely aware of our local environment and we have to accept responsibility for our own carbon footprint,” said Soueid.
“Not only must we reduce our water and energy consumption, we plan and coordinate deliveries from our suppliers to minimise fuel pollution and we manage our own waste, without compromising on guest comfort, or service,” he added.
GGC is the premier worldwide sustainability stamp for the tourism industry and more than 800 businesses in 50 countries have so far met the 337 exacting standards. Farnek Consulting currently has the rights to utilise the Green Globe brand, covering tourism properties within 20 different countries throughout the Middle East.
“In addition to its sustainable operation, the Qasr Al Sarab also incorporates a ‘green’ design which blends in seamlessly with the desert landscape, in keeping with Emirati cultural heritage. Even during construction, the developers had the foresight to minimise the carbon emissions from concrete by using geo-textile sandbags to build 5.5 kilometres of retaining walls,” said Sandrine Le Biavant, Division Manager, Farnek Consulting.
GGC certified hotels can also have access to Farnek’s web-based Hotel Optimiser technology, which enables them to track their performance of energy and water consumption as well as non-recyclable waste production, calculate their CO2 emissions and analyse the savings on operational costs.
For more information about applying for Green Globe Certification log on to www.farnek.com
Photo caption: “Whenever I look out of my hotel window, I am given a reminder of just how precious our water resources are,” said Wael Soueid, general manager of the Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara.
Farnek is one of the region’s foremost property and facilities management outsource companies. With a skilled workforce of more than 1,500 people, Farnek Avireal has offices in Dubai and Abu Dhabi and maintains over 1,000 properties alone on behalf of many international and regional companies.
Farnek has also signed a commitment to support myclimate an international organisation that helps companies around the world manage their carbon emissions through a range of offset programmes.
About Green Globe Certification
The Green Globe brand is used under a license from Green Globe Ltd. All intellectual property incl. the Green Globe Standard and Indicators, Auditing Process, Solution Center and Web Domains are owned and operated by Green Globe Certification.
Green Globe Certification is the worldwide sustainability system based on internationally-accepted criteria for sustainable operation and management of travel and tourism businesses. Operating under a worldwide license, Green Globe Certification is based in California, USA, and is represented in over 83 countries. Green Globe Certification is a member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, supported by the United Nations World Tourism Organization. For more information, please visit www.greenglobe.com .
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
RTA: 50 million trips for taxis during the first half of 2013
The highest record number in the history of taxis in the Emirate of Dubai
Dubai - Roads and Transport Authority:
Taxi vehicles in the Emirate of Dubai achieved an unprecedented figure in the number of trips carried out by taxis in the Emirate of Dubai where it reached during the first half of this year, 50 million and 12 thousand and 545 trips, with an average of 8 thousand and 335 thousand and 424 trip per month, which is considered a new record in the Emirate of Dubai where the increase is estimated by 3% compared to the same period last year.
This number reflects the workload done by institutions and departments of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in the transport service in the Emirate of Dubai, in order to preserve the cultural image of Dubai as a tourist and economic interface that attracts millions of visitors and can accommodate millions of citizens and residents.
Movement of taxis is monitored in the Emirate of Dubai by smart technical system called D8, where the system provides accurate data to determine the number of trips completed in addition to all the operations carried out by taxis.
The D8 is the system used in the management of the reservation and distribution of taxis in the Emirate of Dubai, where the Roads and Transport Authority is keen to provide services and support to the public around the clock, so the provision of data and statistics is essential to measure the volume of work and to provide better services.
The Reservation and Distribution Center of the Department of Transport Systems at the Public Transport Agency, is one of the centers which provides many important services for the users of taxis in the Emirate of Dubai.
Mr. Adel Shakri, Director of Transport Systems at the RTA Public Transport Agency stated that the Reservation and Distribution Center plays a pivotal role in serving a wide sector of the public regarding the variety of services and covering it to include all segments of society, as well as the volume of work that deals with the center, which reached during the first half of this year, 2 million, 206 thousand and 717 outlet booking at an average of 367 thousand and 786 booking monthly.
In details, Shakri said: The Reservation and Distribution Center carried out one million and 472 thousand and 297 trips with an average of less than 5 to 20 minutes for arrival of the total number of trips carried out through the Center, of which 222 thousand and 933 trips in less than 5 minutes, and 398 thousand and 263 in 5 minutes, while the number reached 425 thousand and 182 in a 10-minute trip, and 272 thousand and 270 in 15 minutes, while the number of trips carried out in a 20-minute trip reached 162 thousand and 649 trips.
He pointed out that the Reservation and Distribution Center is responsible for coordinating the booking services of taxis in the Emirate of Dubai, where it works on the distribution of reservations of taxis on the five companies responsible for the operation of taxis, namely, (Dubai Taxi / CARS Taxi / Taxi Arabiyah / National Taxi / Metro Taxi), the Center receives public calls throughout the day, and through the technically developed system that locates the addresses and locations of the Emirate of Dubai meticulously, and clients reservations are performed instantly and precisely, pointing out that there are other many other communication channels as well as telephone, which able to book taxis using Smartphone applications, and customized website for hotels and registered public places, and text messages to the taxis parking in most public places and areas of the Emirate.
He added: the Center also provides its permanent customers the IVR calls, where the caller can book and determine the time and address and type of service by following the instructions of the recorded voice message, and other services that cover the needs of all segments of society; such as reserving taxis for people with special needs and vehicles for ladies and family taxis and vehicles containing seats for children, as well as the role of Reservation and Distribution Center in the provision of taxis for events held in the Emirate of Dubai and contribute to the service of the public during festivals and celebrations as is the case at airports and ports.
Shakri concluded: The staff of the Reservation and Distribution Center works according to organized mechanism and ambitious vision aims to achieve customer satisfaction and provide excellent services to all segments of society using the latest technical methods and smart means, according to the directives of Dubai government that support in making a smart breakthrough in government services not only to keep pace with the era, but in order to precede it.
Sunday, August 11, 2013
RTA completes construction of 104 km-long cycling track in Dubai
Dubai - Roads & Transport Authority:
The Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) announced the completion of construction of a cycling track extending 104 kilometers in Dubai as part of its plan to provide suitable transit alternatives for cycling enthusiasts.
Engineer Maitha bin Udai, CEO of RTA Traffic & Roads Agency, said: “The Cycling Track project was a result of a comprehensive study commissioned by the RTA in the context of its strategic plan based on the several key aspects that include: construction of cycling tracks within the right of way, standards of separating these tracks from pedestrian pathways, route charted for tracks in recreational areas, construction materials used, and the related traffic signage. Criteria also included the selection of areas that have peculiar nature which have to be given priority in the construction process based on the tourist environment, popularity of the area, accessibility to the metro stations & mass transit modes, and the fulfillment of safety & the aesthetic aspects among others.
“Cycling tracks constructed comprise a 23 km-long track along Jumeirah Street, 1.4 km track along Street No 7 linking Jumeirah Street with Al Mankhool Street, 1.6 km track at the Mall of the Emirates Station, 67 km track spanning Seih Assalam Road & Al Qudra Road as well as the Dubai Cycling Track Gate, public utilities, rental outlets for bicycles & accessories, and a fully equipped medical clinic in addition to 11 km track at the center of Bur Dubai covering Al Fuhaidi, Al Falah, Al Ghubaiba and Al Hisn Roads,” stated Maitha.
“The RTA will embark on the construction of suggested tracks in a number of areas during 2013-2014 covering Al Barsha, Al Khawaneej, Al Warqaa, Al Qouz 3, Al Sufouh Street, Al Mamzar Park, Mishsrif Park, and Hor Al Anz East. The RTA will also inculcate cycling tracks to projects pertinent to the completion of construction of internal roads and pavements in residential areas in order to link the points of attractions, such as public parks and shopping malls, with collector roads in areas covered by the cycling tracks,” added the CEO of RTA Traffic & Roads Agency.