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FIA and top US university launch research study to reduce carbon footprint of UAE motorsport events

DUBAI: World motorsport’s governing body, the FIA, is working with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Senseable Dubai Lab to help reduce the carbon footprint of major UAE events including the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

While contributing to tourism and the local economy, major events have a significant impact on their host cities, challenging public transportation and increasing congestion. Improving access to these major events has become an important challenge, according to a press release issued by the FIA on Thursday.

As part of the MIT Senseable Dubai Lab — an initiative with the Dubai Future Foundation — researchers will gather data to build a picture of city-wide mobility patterns around major UAE motorsport events.

This data could then be used to suggest improvements to local mobility planning, including traffic management and public transport, ultimately reducing congestion and carbon emissions during these events.

The FIA and MIT will work with stakeholders including Formula One Management, the Yas Marina Circuit, and local governments, which will play a pivotal role in data collection efforts and future implementation.

“We are delighted to support this exciting new research project, in collaboration with MIT Senseable City Lab,” FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem said. “This comes at a moment of enormous growth for the UAE, and we look forward to joining forces with our stakeholders to make major events more eco-friendly, efficient, and enjoyable for attendees through enhanced mobility solutions.”

In the future, the FIA and MIT will share their findings and lessons learned with other cities, event organizers, and FIA members.

Umberto Fugiglando, research manager and partnerships lead at MIT Senseable City Lab, said: “We are proud to welcome the FIA to join our MIT Senseable Dubai Lab, where together with their stakeholders they will support our research on urban sustainable mobility in the UAE.

“In a region where cities are evolving very fast, we have the possibility to study urban mobility at large, and scientifically explore and anticipate future paradigms that need to be more socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable.”


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