In a forum with the Department of Energy on June 30 this year, Puerto Princesa city mayor Edward Hagedorn announced that the local government has purchased one hundred units of the energy-efficient electric tricycles, or e-trikes, to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality in the city. Hagedorn said that sixty of those units are set to be deployed to the Puerto Princesa City International Airport to serve as taxis; while the rest of the units were appropriated to tricycle operators and drivers association (TODA) for public transport.
This move is part of the local government’s plan to replace the more than 4,000 conventional petrol-powered public transport tricycles with the eco-friendly e-trikes to promote the city’s clean air program, even as it ultimately aims to make Puerto Princesa the first carbon-neutral city in the Philippines.
Using locally-manufactured fiberglass body, the e-trikes are put together by local assembler, Green Tech EcoCenter (GTE) in partnership with a motor vehicle parts manufacturers’ association. Because of this, there is a potential for an increased in employment of local people. Mayor Hagedorn explained that,
“Aside from helping protect our environment, this project will also transfer electric tricycle technology to our locals and enhance the skills of our local tinsmiths, welders, auto painters, auto mechanics, auto electricians, upholsterers, trimmers, assemblers, and fiberglass makers.”
The e-trikes are charged by an electric motor powered by a lithium ion battery technology that can accommodate huge loads of luggage and six passengers comfortably seated without straining its motor. The vehicles come in three kWh and six kWh packs. Those models with 3 kWh battery pack can run as far as 50 kilometers on a single charge, and can be recharged to 80 percent in less than 30 minutes at fast charging stations. While those models that use 6 kWh battery pack runs up to a hundred kilometers on a single overnight charge. The e-trikes will also be fitted with an internal cooling fan.
It has been months now since the announcement was made. We hope that the e-trikes project finally becomes operational in full blast and start plying, not only in Puerto Princesa, but also throughout the entire Philippines.