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Innovative thinking for record breaking fuel efficiency returns to the streets of Rotterdam

Driving from Rotterdam to Moscow on one litre of fuel may seem like an impossible task, but it isn’t. Every year, students from across Europe push the boundaries of fuel efficiency during the Shell Eco-marathon Europe, competing using vehicles they design and build themselves. Record breaking fuel efficiency is set with conventional fuels such as petrol, diesel, ethanol and GTL fuel, as well as alternative fuels like hydrogen and electricity. In 2012 the Dutch city of Rotterdam was temporarily transformed into a street circuit, with over 40,000 spectators in attendance.

This year, over 3,000 students will again compete in Rotterdam from May 15-19, expecting to improve on last year’s results. 224 teams from 24 countries have been invited to compete in two categories; the futuristic Prototype category and the UrbanConcept category, which features more conventional concept vehicles.

Challenging street circuit

Last year’s introduction of a street circuit in Rotterdam demonstrated how new technology can work in the heart of real cities. The circuit offers students an extra challenge, setting a new standard for years to come. With five 90-degree corners on the route, teams must now rely heavily on their driving skills. In 2012, students quickly adapted to these challenges by deploying new strategies and careful preparations, setting fuel efficiency records beyond expectation.

Peter Voser, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell, said: “After visiting the Shell Eco-marathon Europe last year, I was impressed and inspired by the way students adapted to the new street circuit. Through the creativity of a new generation of engineers and a partnership with the city of Rotterdam, we aim to showcase Europe’s talent in designing innovative approaches to meeting future energy challenges.”

The 2013 Shell Eco-marathon Europe sees the merging of the Solar and ‘Battery Electric’ categories. This change reflects the direction the automotive industry is taking on electric vehicles, and will create a more challenging competition in the ‘Battery Electric’ category.

Following the successful Powering Progress Together forum on the Energy-Water-Food Stress Nexus last year, this year’s forum, on 15 May 2013, will focus on greater societal resilience.

Around 500 European thought leaders, including representatives from business, NGOs, local government and tomorrow’s leaders will discuss how partnerships across business, civil society and local authorities will help them survive, adapt, and grow in a volatile world where disturbances can be caused by resource stresses, societal stresses or acute events like droughts or floods.

Once again, the Shell Eco-marathon Europe is the perfect backdrop for this event.

Rotterdam is an ideal host and partner for the competition and the forum, because of its ambitious ideas on sustainable energy solutions and internationally renowned initiatives on climate change adaptation.

About Shell Eco-marathon Europe

Shell Eco-marathon is one of the world’s most challenging student innovation competitions and takes place annually in Europe, America and Asia.

The competition brings together current and future leaders, along with a broader public passionate about energy issues.

It encourages debate around sustainable solutions to the challenge of rising global energy demand.

At Shell Eco-marathon Europe a future generation of engineers and scientists aged 16-25 from around 24 countries compete in cars they design and build.

Success is measured on who can drive the furthest on the equivalent of 1 kWh or 1 litre of fuel, thanks to their creative designs and technical know-how.

Shell Eco-marathon Europe aims to involve European citizens in challenges related to energy and mobility, while inspiring them to consider innovative solutions.

With Rotterdam as the host city, Shell brings the Eco-marathon closer to the public with a fit-for-purpose street circuit.

Shell Eco-marathon Europe is a visible demonstration of Shell’s concern with helping the world to meet its growing energy needs in a responsible way and demonstrates its collaborative approach, bringing together students, partners and the public.

The 29th edition of Shell Eco-marathon Europe takes place from May 15-19 2013 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, with 224 invited teams from 24 countries. Various activities around the challenge are offered at the venue to engage and inspire European citizens who are interested in the future of our energy and the technologies to meet our future needs.

The Shell Eco-marathon is a global initiative with similar events in the US and Asia: Shell Eco-marathon Americas takes place from April 4-7 in Houston, USA and Shell Eco-marathon Asia: from July 4-7 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Royal Dutch Shell plc

Royal Dutch Shell plc is incorporated in England and Wales, has its headquarters in The Hague and is listed on the London, Amsterdam and New York stock exchanges. Shell companies have operations in more than 80 countries and territories with businesses including oil and gas exploration and production; production and marketing of liquefied natural gas and gas to liquids; manufacturing, marketing and shipping of oil products and chemicals and renewable energy projects. For further information, visit www.shell.com.

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