The School of Law, University of Nairobi, Kenya
Exploring the Potential of Minibus Electrification in Three African Cities
EP-2019-MAC-04, Edna Odhiambo, Lecturer
In African cities the majority of people use minibus systems as their main mode of motorized transit. Minibuses are essential for mobility and access and are the core of public transit systems. There is, nonetheless, a need to support minibus businesses and upgrade their services to respond more effectively to equity, public health and climate concerns. Improving minibus services can help retain transit users and de-incentivize ownership and reliance on private cars. However, minibuses are often themselves second-hand and poorly maintained, use dirty fuels, and also contribute to a growing and serious air pollution problem in the local environment (Prozzi, Naude and Sperling 2002). The air pollution problem disproportionately impacts workers in the sector, the walking poor and transit passengers, constituting a major, under-addressed social and environmental justice problem (Ngo et al. 2015).
Most approaches to addressing this problem involve either a focus on cleaner fuels, or replacement of minibus systems by bigger, cleaner buses. This project explores whether minibus electrification is an additional viable policy option. We will conduct a comparative study of existing transport electrification policy, regulation and pilots in Nairobi, Cape Town and Cairo. The study will draw on mixed methods including systematic reviews of policy and regulatory environments, and case studies of minibus electrification efforts including Opi-Bus in Nairobi, a planned minibus electrification pilot project in Cape Town and Revolta’s electric charging network roll-out as well as APTA and Mwasalat Misr’s EBus operations trials in Cairo. We will conduct focus group discussions with operators and drivers, as well as interviews with policy makers and private sector actors in both electric vehicle-producing companies and green finance houses. Finally, we will create a very basic cost/benefit model for minibus electrification.
Edna Odhiambo is a climate change lawyer with a decade of experience in securing sustainability. She has contributed to mainstreaming climate change in several policy and regulatory frameworks including transport, energy, finance, agriculture, and planning.
She has several publications with her most recent examining ‘multi-level governance on active mobility in Nairobi’. Her love for
public speaking has seen her deliver numerous presentations on climate governance and sustainable cities.
She lectures at the University of Nairobi, School of Law and also serves as the Country Lead, Kenya for the Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN).
See also Interview with Edna Odhiambo - January 2021 Newsletter
Invitation to submit an Expression of interest Pdf, 457 kB.
Deadline: 1 October 2022
Call for Project Proposals Pdf, 402.9 kB.
Deadline: 15 September 2022
- Fourth Call for Research Proposals Pdf, 1.3 MB.
Closed: 1 September 2022
- Catalysing Curriculum Change at Universities in SSA 2022 Pdf, 1.3 MB.
Deadline extended to 1 Nov. 2022
Deadline: 31 October 2022
MOBILITY GRANT 2022- MAC-MG 2022 Pdf, 447.1 kB.
Deadline: 31 October 2022
Blog! Blog! Blog!
This Meeting of the Minds' blog monthly releases interviews of global transportation researchers from the VREF's Future Urban Transport Program Network.
This CityFix series, produced by the WRI (World Ressources Institute) Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and supported by the VREF, discusses walking and cycling in cities with a special focus on low- and middle-income countries.
The Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF) inspires, initiates and supports research and educational activities through the Future Urban Transport Programme - How to deal with the complexity of urban transport (FUT).
Our Vision: Sustainable transport for equitable access in urban areas