Rwandan motorbike taxi drivers, or motors, are now converting to electric motorcycles to transport customers around the streets of Kigali. The Rwanda Electric Motors initiative is part of the government’s ambitious plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 16 percent by 2030.
Evode Niyorurema is not an environmental activist but upgrading his motorcycle taxi to an electric one made him a champion of Rwanda’s fight against climate change, he now visits this garage in the capital Kigali regularly to recharge his batteries.
In an interview with a local news publication, he said “the reason I switched to an electric motorbike is that i wanted to avoid fuel costs which are always rising and also the costs of going to the garage all the time with an electric motorbike I don’t have to make as many trips to the garage.”
The firm responsible for revamping his bike is Rwanda electric motors have converted around 80 motorcycle taxis and it has also developed 200 brand new electric bikes in Kigali, the CEO Donald Kabanda the long-term affordability of electric vehicles makes the switch a no-brainer.
Donald said, “one battery can cover up to 60 kilometers and it is it costs 900 francs and if you compare it with one liter of petrol that is that costs above 1,000 run on the francs it covers only 35 kilometers so if you compare economically there is an advantage for the riders.”
While the project has clear economic incentives electric vehicles are environmentally friendly and the bikes help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, Rwanda’s government and the UN jointly fund the revamping in a bid to reduce local carbon dioxide emissions by 16 by 2030. Last year, the authorities dropped import taxes on electric and hybrid vehicles but they are too expensive for most people here green motorbike taxis the main public transport in Kigali may be a better alternative.
(Image Source: ESI Africa)