Kenya Unveils Plans For Nationwide E-bike Scheme

The Kenyan government unveiled plans to roll out electric motorbikes across the country on Friday.

President William Ruto announced the initiative with African startup Spiro just days before he hosts the first Africa Climate Summit in the Kenyan capital Nairobi next week.

About two million motorbikes are on the roads in Kenya, he said, mostly “boda bodas” or two-wheeled taxis that are commonly used across the continent.

Kenya, he said, aimed to eventually phase out the combustion engine-powered motorbikes, warning that the increasing use of such vehicles across the continent had “serious implications” for climate change and air quality.

Although Africa contributes only two to three percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, it suffers disproportionately from climate change, according to the UN Environment Program.

Spiro said it has already introduced nearly 10,000 electric bikes in Africa to countries including Benin, Togo, Rwanda, and Uganda.

It stated in a statement that it intends to build 3,000 battery-charging and swapping stations in Kenya, in addition to the 350 already in place across Africa, with a potential rollout of more than one million electric vehicles across the country.

Ruto, who has positioned himself at the vanguard of African efforts to tackle climate change, stated that Kenya has the capacity to generate 100% of its energy from renewable sources such as hydroelectric, geothermal, solar, and wind power by 2030, up from more than 90% presently.

Kenya generates most of its energy from renewable sources such as hydroelectric and geothermal power.

But the country suffers from frequent power cuts.

Last weekend’s major blackout left numerous districts without power for hours, including Nairobi and its international airport, which was left in the dark after a generator serving the main terminals failed to perform.

Fuel prices at the pump have lately risen to their highest levels in more than a decade, compounding Kenyans’ economic woes caused by a cost-of-living crisis and a slew of new taxes.

According to government estimates, the number of registered electric cars (EVs) now amounts for less than 1% of the total 4.4 million registered vehicles.

Written by PH

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