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Tackling social issues through electric vehicles

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Electric Mobility

Tackling social issues through electric vehicles
EMotors ZuM electric tricycles can each carry up to five passengers and are propelled by a 4-kWh motor that draws power from lead-acid batteries.

WOMEN’S welfare, livelihood creation, environmental protection — these are social issues addressed by a partnership between a manufacturer of electric-powered vehicles and a company that operates several properties in the Philippines’ premier mixed business/residential district.

EMotors, Inc. (EMI) and The Net Group (TNG) on Sept. 8 started the pilot phase of their initiative in which EMI has supplied seven units of its ZuM electric-powered, three-wheel vehicles to two of the seven TNG developments within Bonifacio Global City (BGC). The vehicles are intended to shuttle employees of tenant companies in the Net Park and Net Lima buildings (as well as people working for the TNG administration) to and from a transport hub located next to a BGC shopping mall, where longer-distance public utility vehicles are available.

The shuttle service is free and will run throughout the day and early evening during the work week. Each ZuM trike, propelled by a 4-kWh electric motor that draws power from lead-acid batteries, can carry up to five passengers.

“The endeavor provides for a win-win-win situation for all stakeholders where the company, the people, and the city gain from the obvious benefits of using zero-emission, zero-noise electric vehicles,” said Elizabeth H. Lee, EMI president.

Ms. Lee explained that besides environmental advantages, the project also promotes women’s welfare as the “majority” of shuttle drivers employed — and to be hired in future — are women. This, according to the executive, allows them to learn a new skill with which to pursue a source of livelihood that is “less taxing, more enjoyable, and fulfilling.”

“By working together, we co-create mutual value. We connect with visionary leaders and citizens who put importance in transforming the way we live, work and play… one that jump-starts a radical change in how we move around our communities and lessen our impact on the environment,” Ms. Lee said.

Tackling social issues through electric vehicles
The Net Group co-presidents Cristina S. Samson and Ramon D. Rufino (left and center) announce the shuttle service with EMotors, Inc. president Elizabeth H. Lee.

Cristina S. Samson, TNG co-president, said the shuttle service also matches TNG’s environmental and healthy-lifestyle advocacies. The executive cited Net Park’s two EV charging stations, which the company had installed as a “forward-looking” initiative anticipating the mainstream use of electric cars. The stations can now recharge the batteries of the ZuM trikes, Ms. Samson said.

She added that Net Park also provides shower rooms and a secure bicycle storage facility — made from repurposed wooden crates — to encourage people to commute to work by bicycle. The new shuttle service presents workers another transport option.

“We’re not just a developer. We provide additional service to our tenants,” Ms. Samson said.

TNG co-president Ramon D. Rufino shared Ms. Samson’s view: “We want to help alleviate the stress of commuting for TNG staff and our tenants even within a short range of radius with the free point-to-point ZuM electric shuttle, one that also supports our corporate sustainability goals.”

Ms. Lee said TNG is the latest in a “growing list of sustainability conscious companies it has partnered with,” which includes PepsiCo, Inc., 2GO Group, Inc., and Astoria Group Corp. — text and photos by Brian M. Afuang

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