E.P.C. to import electric cars in project

The Electric Power Corporation (E.P.C.) will import 10 electric cars as part of a Government-run pilot project promoting renewable energy to mitigate the impact of climate change.

The E.P.C. General Manager, Faumui Tauiliili Iese Toimoana, said that the initiative is part of the Government’s response to climate change. 

He added that the E.P.C. has been tasked as the project implementer as they are considered the experts in this area and are able to report back to the Government. 

"The initiative is a directive from the government and E.P.C. is implementing the importation of 10 electric cars: five SUVs and five vans," he said.

"It’s a pilot project addressing climate change and its part of our mitigation efforts in response to climate change.

"We have the capacity to use these cars, and we’ll be able to provide the feedback and the analysis of the car to the government for future developments."

Faumui also confirmed that the E.P.C. has started the tender process for the importation of the electric cars which are due next month, while adding a few companies have shown interest as well. 

Highlighting the advantages of e-cars from a reduced carbon dioxide emission perspective, he added that such vehicles do not need diesel or petrol to run. 

Last week an elderly member of the public, Tofilau George Westbrook, expressed reservations about the benefits of e-cars and warned of the risks of passengers getting electrocuted when driving. 

But Faumui clarified, in response to the concerns, that there is low to no risk as e-cars are completely different from electric homeware appliances. 

"It is called an electric car but there is a huge difference from electric appliances that are used at home which could be very dangerous," he said.

"This type of electric car operates on electricity powered by a car battery and it uses less electricity which is usually 24 volts and it's actually low risk and there is no difference from the system of the cars that we are currently using in Samoa which initiates the start-up of the car and we haven’t heard anyone who was electrocuted by it.

"So for e-cars, power from the battery powers the motor, which enables the car to drive and there is no combustion and there is no need for petrol or diesel. So, therefore, there is low to no risk at all."

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