One small change…One big impact… 

Back in February 2022, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai launched Dubai Can – a sustainable refillable water bottle initiative in the city.

The initiative saw the installation of water refilling stations around several locations in Dubai. The aim is to encourage residents and tourists to use refillable bottles and to forgo plastic disposable water bottles.

Did it work?

The short answer is a resounding ‘Yes!’.


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It has been just a little over 100 days since the launch but on World Oceans Day (June 8), Sheikh Hamdan announced that the initiative has resulted in a reduction in the usage of more than one million 500 ml single-use plastic water bottles.

According to Dubai Media Office, the ‘Dubai Can initiative has resulted in a reduction in usage of an equivalent of 1,077,474 500 ml single-use plastic water bottles, with over 538,737 litres of water being consumed by Dubai’s residents and visitors from water fountains across the city.’

dubai can

At the moment, there are 40 refilling stations around Dubai with an aim to reach 50 by December 2022.  You can find them at popular destinations, attractions and public parks. The list of locations of the water fountains can be found here.

Yousuf Lootah, Executive Director – Tourism Development & Investments, and Vice Chairman of Dubai Sustainable Tourism at Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), said, ‘World Oceans Day is a day to inform the public of the impact of human actions on the ocean and develop a worldwide citizens movement for the protection of oceans across the globe. Single-use plastic pollution is one of the biggest pollutants of oceans and we need to act now to find solutions to such environmental challenges.’

He stated that the success of the Dubai Can initiative further contributes to our leadership‘s goal to enhance Dubai’s position as a leading sustainable destination and bolsters our endeavour to become the best city in the world to live in, work and visit.’

Other ways you can make an impact

It doesn’t have to be big, even a small change can make a difference.

Simple changes such as using refillable water bottles and public water stations and installing water filters in their homes, offices and schools will help result in the reduction of single-use plastic water bottles.

Images: Dubai Media Office