Non-repayable loans for e-bikes must increase: Tehran City Council chairman

February 17, 2019 - 9:27

TEHRAN – While an important strategy to contain Tehran’s air pollution is using green vehicles, non-repayable loans to incentivize the owners to replace their motorcycles with electric ones is not sufficient and must increase, Mohsen Hashemi, Tehran City Council chairman, has said.

The scheme on encouraging the citizens to replace carbureted motorcycles with electric ones has started over a few years ago, however, the process has been evolving slowly, he said, adding, we hope to increase the use of electric motorbikes by allocating the necessary funds along with supporting the manufacturers next year (March 2019-March 2020).

The handouts supporting the residents to purchase the motorbikes has been about 25 million rials (nearly $600), which is not adequate anymore given the current economic condition, he stated, Tasnim reported on Saturday.

Hashemi went on to explain that one of the significant solutions effective in air pollution mitigation is banning the carbureted motorcycles and replacing them with the electric motorcycles or green vehicles, so government is supposed to offer more generous incentives to encourage the residents in this regard.

He further expressed hope that green vehicles use increase with cooperation of Municipality and government.

Referring to supporting the manufacturers to enhance the pace of green vehicle use in the capital, he noted that we discussed the issue with Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture officials recently, and it was scheduled to use the Chamber’s capacity in this manner.

It is planned to replace the electric motorcycles more quickly by the next year, as a way to curb air pollution haunting the capital, he concluded.

Earlier on January, Vahid Hosseini, head of the national working group for air pollution mitigation affiliated to the Department of Environment said that air pollution brings heavy economic burden amounting to $2.8 billion for the Iranian capital.

The vehicle cycle consisting of manufacturing process to scrapping due to being clunker is the highest contributor to air pollution, as some 70 percent of the emission are generated by mobile sources, he lamented.

Moreover, in December 2018, Hosseini told ISNA that some 25,000 polluting carbureted motorcycles will be discarded by the next two months following the enforcement of clean air law, which was passed by the parliament on July 16, 2017, and singles out inefficient vehicles, substandard fuels, industrial activities, and dust storms as the major sources of air pollution in the country and tasks different organizations with specific actions in line with the objective.

According to a report by the World Bank, motorcycles are the second largest contributor to PM in Tehran, even before cars which greatly outnumber them. There are less than 1 million motorcycles in Tehran which contribute to about 12 percent of the total mobile PM emissions. On the other hand, with a total fleet of 3.37 million, or 80 percent of all vehicles, cars only account for about 3 percent of the city’s mobile PM pollution.

One of the main reasons behind their high contribution to emissions is that a large part of the fuel consumed in motorcycles burns incompletely. The Tehran motorcycle fleet consists mostly of carburetor-equipped motorcycles which are typically less fuel efficient and emit more emissions compared to newer, fuel injection technology.


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