DOTr, LGUs, transport cooperatives, and universities signify continued support for sustainable transport

October 23, 2023
Department of Transportation


Mandaluyong City – Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista led the ceremonial signing of seven Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) with local transport stakeholders towards sustaining low-carbon transport initiatives in the country. The local chief executives in attendance were Mayor Benjamin Magalong of Baguio City and Mayor Arlene Arcillas of Sta. Rosa City. 

A milestone under the Promotion of Low Carbon Urban Transport Systems in the Philippines (LCT) Project, co-implemented by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the support of the Global Environment Facility, local government units, transport cooperatives, and universities pledged to carry on with the promotion and adoption of low carbon transport systems in their respective localities.

Since 2020, the LCT pilot cities of Baguio, Iloilo, Pasig and Sta. Rosa, along with General Santos City, have made significant accomplishments by paving the way to transition to electric vehicles (EV) for public transport, as well as promoting non-motorized means of transport such as cycling and walking. These efforts are expected to contribute to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improving air quality. 

Secretary Bautista signed a MOA with each of the four pilot cities of Baguio, Iloilo, Pasig, and Sta. Rosa on continuing the implementation of low carbon transport programs, including an amended agreement signed with Dalan ni Taltallak consortium of Baguio City with Mayor Magalong. Key representatives from the academe, including Engr. Jeffrey Des Binwag, Dean of St. Louis University’s School of Engineering and Architecture, Engr. Jeferd Saong, Dean of the University of Baguio’s School of Engineering and Architecture, and Engr. Dexter Hansel Apnoyan, Dean of University of the Cordilleras’ College of Engineering and Architecture, also participated in the ceremony.

Further, DOTr also signed a MOA with the recipients of the LCT EV Investment Programme, which include the Irisan Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association (IJODA) Transport Cooperative of Baguio City, Aerostar 1 Transport Multi-Purpose Cooperative of Iloilo City and Lagao Drivers Operators Transport Cooperative (LADOTRANSCO) of General Santos City.  

UNDP Philippines Deputy Resident Representative Edwine Carrié and DOTr Undersecretary for Road Transport and Infrastructure Anneli R. Lontoc stood as witnesses.

In his welcome remarks, Mr. Carrié commended the project partners, LGUs, and the other stakeholders for the crucial roles they fulfilled along LCT, and added that the journey to a greener transport sector does not end with the project. “Together, we have already planted seeds that we hope will bloom into a greener transport sector. We will all continue in our own ways, but we are still heading in the same direction,” said Mr.  Carrié. 

The signing ceremony also saw the handover of transport equipment, EVs, and EV charging stations to LGUs, transport cooperatives, and academic consortiums. These are intended to complement their efforts and plans to implement greener transport practices and continue to serve as models for other cities. The transport cooperatives strengthened their commitment to shift and carry on with EV adoption for their fleets, while the universities committed to undertaking low-carbon transport research and innovations, as well as preparing future sustainable transport engineers.

During the signing ceremony, Secretary Bautista called on everyone to embrace sustainable transport, collaborate, and demonstrate solidarity to support green recovery efforts so that future Filipinos will be left with an improved standard of living. In his keynote speech, the transport chief said, “We need to work together to discover that healthy and dynamic balance between commuter welfare, public transport, financial stability, and the environment,” Secretary Bautista expressed.

The symbolic event served as a timely assurance that local transport stakeholders are addressing air pollution and climate change, which are largely caused by motor vehicles. A few weeks ago, Metro Manila was shrouded in thick smog, which prompted schools to cancel classes and the public cautioned to wear masks for protection. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) attributed the smog to emissions from heavy vehicular traffic, especially during rush hour.