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E-Trikes To Replace Trikes And Bikes in Philippines

In the Philippines, there are currently 3.5 million trikes and motorcycles operating throughout the country, most of which are running on combustion engines. By no accident, there has long been a correlation between the carbon emissions released from these vehicles and the country’s suffering air quality.

The Philippines are certainly not the only country to struggle with pollution from vehicles. Worldwide, the transportation sector is responsible for 30 percent of all air pollution.

Without a change in transport systems, future pollution rates look rather grim, as global carbon emissions from transportation are expected to increase 200 percent by 2030.

To remedy this outlook, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) is working with the Philippine government and the country’s Department of Energy to introduce electric powered trikes, to take the place of conventional trikes powered by diesel fuel.

New e-trike in Philippines

Image source: Asian Development Bank

Ideally, e-trike operations will be implemented as a responsible measure to reduce pollution, eliminate the gas-related costs of transportation, and improve the country’s overall air quality, resulting in better national health rates. They are also an efficient alternative to traditional vehicles, as 75 percent of the electricity in electric vehicles actually go toward powering the vehicle, compared to a scant 20 percent for traditional vehicles.

To enhance the impact of operating e-trikes, municipalities may additionally build solar-powered charging stations.

The project comes as financial relief to drivers as well, for they will be given the option to either lease or lease-to-own their e-trikes, costing them less than twenty pesos a day. Drivers are also rid the need of paying for gas, as they would with traditional trikes, which adds up to a daily savings of around 200 pesos. All of this results in higher take home earnings for drivers.

As a pilot project, twenty e-trike units were deployed in the City of  Mandaluyong. The deploys consist of two different models.

Half are powered by a 3 kilowatt-hour battery pack; the other half, a 6 kilowatt-hour battery pack. Each model has its virtues. The 3 kWh trikes can travel 40 to 50 km on a single charge. If allowed to break at a charging station, these models can be recharged up to 80 percent in less than an hour, so long as it is during daylight hours. The 6 kWh battery pack model, on the other hand, is able to travel 100 km on a single over-night charge.

If the goals of the ADB and Philippine government are met, there will be 100,000 e-trikes operating by 2016.

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