Utrecht is the winner of the Fully Charged CITIES award 2021
Utrecht is actively supporting progressive initiatives and innovations to become fully climate neutral by 2030. By joining forces, the city is successfully building a flourishing, green city. This work is now rewarded with a Fully Charged CITIES award by the renowned Fully Charged platform. This platform is the world’s number 1 clean energy & electric vehicle channel that has an audience of 2.2+ million people worldwide.
Fully Charged CITIES is designed to both recognise those who are committed to eradicating air pollution and creating a smarter, more habitable city and also to inspire other cities to follow their lead. The program attracted entries from the UK, Europe, USA, Middle East & Australia proving that there is a drive for change globally.
Why Utrecht came out as the winner
The judging panel consisted of journalists, scientists and experts on clean energy and sustainability. The panel was impressed by the city’s gas grid phase out (today, a third of the city is already natural-gas free) along with their strong vision with specific technological and climate goals. As the city excels in the deployment of clean energy and zero emission transport, they acknowledge Utrecht as a hotspot for healthy urban living in Europe.
Becoming fully bidirectional
One of the city’s goals is to become the world’s first bidirectional city. Thanks to leading organisations as We Drive Solar and Smart Solar Charging, the city is well on its way to achieving this goal before 2030. We Drive Solar stores locally generated solar energy in shared electric cars via a smart bidirectional charging and storage system (V2G). So far, 500 bidirectional charging stations have been installed. Soon the new ISO15118 bidirectional protocol will be implemented, making bidirectional energy exchange possible for all future electric cars. To scale up this technology, We Drive Solar and Utrecht have partnered up with Hyundai who will provide the first 150 bidirectional IONIQ 5 cars in 2022.
Leading cycling city
Utrecht is also known as the best cycling city in the world. It has the world’s largest bicycle parking garage, as well as many cycling paths where cyclists have priority over cars. In the coming years, more will be invested in a green environment with even more cycling and walking paths, to further reduce emissions.
Three episodes on the Fully Charged platform will be dedicated to Utrecht. The first episode has just launched and includes the award presentation as well as a deep dive in Utrecht as a cycling city. Later this month, the two other episodes about the city’s bidirectional car charging systems and car sharing initiatives in new housing projects will be released