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Kenya’s Ambitious Path to Achieving a Zero Emissions Public Transportation System

A startup company called Opibus is on a mission to refit electric engines into diesel and petrol buses that have the capacity to travel over 250 kilometres a day on a single charge. Filip Lovstrom is the Founder of OPIBUS. “We remove the internal combustion engine, we replace that with an electric motor, and then we put a battery pack and a control unit to it. Which means that suddenly we no longer have to go to the petrol station to fuel our buses or our vehicles with petrol or diesel,” he says. However the cost of refitting a fuel run engine with an electric engine is too high for many owners in the public service vehicle industry. The cost is approximately 45 thousand US dollars whereas a second hand bus imported into Kenya usually costs about a third less. Most of the parts for the electric buses also have to be imported into Kenya from Europe adding to the cost of going green. The Kenyan government is also taxing the electric components used in assembling the electric buses.