E-jeepney finally gets license plate from LTO; e-tricycles next
By Rainier Allan Ronda Updated November 18, 2008 12:00 AM
The “e-jeepney,” a Filipino designed and built passenger jeepney running on electricity, has finally been issued a license plate by the Land Transportation Office (LTO), clearing the way for their daily presence in the country’s major thoroughfares.
Ferdinand Raquelsantos, president of PhUV Inc., said that the issuance of the license plate to the e-jeepney, currently being pilot-tested in a jeepney route in the Makati City central business district, is a milestone in the local automotive industry’s efforts to come out with locally-developed cars running on cleaner and cheaper energy.
“This is a very significant milestone in the local auto industry as it signals the birth of a cleaner alternative in the public mass transport system in our country,” Raquelsantos said, adding that PhUV Inc. can now begin the mass production of the e-jeepneys.
“This will encourage us as we begin the next phase of the program – the mass production of more electric jeepneys in the next few months. As a matter of fact, a second e-jeepney will soon be added to ply the Salcedo Village route in Makati City,” he shared.
He added that the LTO’s establishment of a registration and classification system for vehicles running on electricity will also encourage them in their efforts to design and produce motorcycles running on electricity which they will call e-tricycles or “e-trikes.”
“Available in three different body configurations, the e-trikes will be the alternative for cleaner mass transport in the countryside. As a matter of fact, we will soon submit a proposal to some local government units and transport cooperatives for the e-trikes to possibly replace the gasoline-powered tricycles in their localities as part of our comprehensive Climate Friendly Cities Program,” he added.
PhUV Inc. is the business arm of the Motor Vehicle Parts Manufacturers Association of the Philippines (MVPMAP) chaired by industrialist Egmidio “Eddie” Jose which is developing the e-jeepney and is also working on a true-blue Filipino designed and built car – the PhUV.
MVPMAP and PhUV Inc. source some of their e-jeepney components from Chinese suppliers.
In a recent official visit of President Arroyo to China, PhUV Inc., signed a memorandum of agreement with the Green Renewable Independent Power Producer (GRIPP) for the supply of more locally designed and assembled e-jeepneys.
When the U.S. military started to leave the Philippines following World War II, they left behind a lot of Jeeps. Over time, Filipinos adapted these Jeeps into Jeepneys, extended Jeep multi-passenger vehicles. New Jeepneys are still being produced and most Filipinos see it as the most economic mode for commuting.
Urban cities in the Philippines are welcoming Electric Jeepneys as part of an innovative project that aims to use energy from biodegradable waste to power an environment-friendly public transport system. The result is a system that addresses an urban environmental problem which is air pollution. These Electric Jeepneys are an example of a concrete and viable way in which cities can contribute to reducing the country’s gas emissions.
By eliminating the use of fuel, these Electric Jeepneys have not only revolutionized a Philippine icon, they also provide an answer to the biggest challenge threatening our planet today which is climate change. The same goes for the e-trikes. Seen as most notorious pollutant in the streets, this would definitely help us minimize pollution that also contributes to climate change. The key to stopping dangerous climate change is to stop reliance on fuel and transition towards a sustainable energy future. Cleaner, safer, renewable energy technologies and energy efficiency hold the key to a country's energy independence.
These small steps must be taken to give our country a brighter and greener future. The life of the earth is in our hands. The little things we do would matter and help us provide change. Let us make our earth livable for our children, their children, and the future generations to come.