Jeepneys are those colorfully-designed vehicles unique to the Philippines. Manila would not be Manila without this mode of public transport which stop, and pick up, passengers without a warning at every intersection. Their drivers are sometimes obnoxious and oblivious to the law, but even then, jeepneys have become icons in themselves, a sturdy symbol about living in the Philippines.
Just when we thought they were in danger of being phased out, comes now the jeepney’s latest evolution. The newest jeepney does not only blare loud music and is airconditioned, it is also electrically-powered from biodegradable wastes. Our big thanks to Greenpeace Philippines for sending the photo and this info:
” Electric-powered jeepneys are set to revolutionize
the Philippinesâ€™ most recognizable icon. Electric Jeepneys (E-Jeepneys),
the first public transport system of its kind in Southeast Asia, were
launched yesterday (July 4) in a historic test drive in Makati City, the countryâ€™s
financial capital, by GRIPP (Green Renewable Independent Power
Producer), Greenpeace, and the Makati City Government.
The Electric Jeepneys are part of an innovative project led by GRIPP
which intends to steer clear of the use of fossil fuels to help mitigate
climate change, even as it addresses urban problems such as air
pollution and solid waste.
The two E-Jeepneys are part of a fleet designed in the country by
Philippine renewables firm Solar Electric Company. They will undergo
technical and commercial tests for 6 months in Makati City and
eventually in key areas in the province of Negros Occidental. The
electric fleet will be increased to 50 units upon the successful
conclusion of the test phase. Also, as stated in the projectâ€™s MOA, the
city will provide a facility that will generate power from the
biodegradable wastes from the cityâ€™s food establishments and wet markets
into which the Electric Jeepneys are meant to be plugged.
“The Electric Jeepneys aim to demonstrate that there are
climate-friendly alternatives to the current polluting modes of public
transportation in the Philippines. The iconic jeepney remains, but
without wasteful and carbon emitting diesel, and while providing
increased incomes to the vehicles’ drivers,” said Athena Ballestros
Ronquillo, founder and chair of GRIPP, the lead proponent of the
E-Jeepneys initiative. “The pilot test in Makati is meant to ensure the
technical, commercial, environmental and social feasibility of the
project. If the project is successful, our hope is that the project will
be replicated in other cities in the country and possibly other Asian
capitals,” she added.
-end of press release
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