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Michelle Yeoh promotes green vehicle technology in China

Zoom  Zoom Issue Date:2016-06-06   Browse:610

An energy efficient fuel cell city bus was showcased on May 30 at the United Nations Compound in Beijing during UNDP Global Goodwill Ambassador Michelle Yeoh’s visit to the city.

UNDP aims to promote clean energy transport in China by showcasing a 12-meter fuel cell bus and driving it around the streets of Beijing. The bus is supported by UNDP, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) and Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) and produced domestically in partnership with Tsinghua University, SinoHytec and Beiqi Foton Motor.

Michelle Yeoh, award winning actress and UNDP global goodwill ambassador, highlighted the imminent need for clean energy during her speech. “UNDP’s mission to end poverty is an effort I am proud to be part of. I’ve always been passionate about advocating for issues that really matter in life and I am really excited to be working with UNDP to promote the newly adopted SDGs,” Yeoh said.

She stressed the importance of ensuring access to reliable and sustainable transport, which is one of the top priorities outlined by the United Nations SDGs. “Last year, the UN adopted 17 global goals to address the world’s most pressing issues, such as climate change, inequality, peace and security. These goals show us that we have the resources and technology to eradicate poverty and combat climate change by 2030,” Yeoh said. “Energy is essential to nearly every major challenge and opportunity the world faces today, such as creating jobs, security, climate change and food production. Access to affordable and clean transport is an urgent issue and today I am looking forward to learning about the benefits of fuel cell technology in China.”

Fuel cell technology, which uses chemical energy from hydrogen to power the car, provides a sustainable and efficient alternative to traditional internal combustion engine vehicles as well as to electric vehicles. The only emission produced by fuel cell buses is water, resulting in no environmental pollution. “The recharge time of fuel cell buses is quicker than that of electric vehicles; that is 10 minutes for a 12 meter bus compared to 5 hours for an electric bus,” an expert explained to Yeoh and Patrick Haverman, Deputy Country Director of UNDP China, during a bus tour on the streets of Beijing.

By showcasing fuel cell technology and with the implementation of a project entitled Demonstration for Fuel-cell Buses Commercialization in China, UNDP and MOST hope to highlight the benefits of reducing dependency on imported oil, improved air quality for health and the benefits to the environment and economy.

“The increasing demand on clean energy and wide application of hydrogen makes the realization of a hydrogen economy increasingly prominent and the prospect of a zero-carbon economy a real possibility,” Haverman said during his opening remarks. “We hope this will eventually help in achieving the UN’s SDGs and contribute to making our world a better place.”

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