AS EFFORTS to restore power supply in most parts of Metro Cebu continue, AboitizPower subsidiary Cebu Private Power Corp. (CPPC) has provided free charging to e-trike operators in Cebu City’s Barangay Ermita, its host community, to aid them in their livelihood.

CPPC’s free charging for electric tricycles or e-trikes started on Dec. 23, 2021, in the aftermath of Typhoon Odette (Rai) and has since been used for a total of 344 charging cycles by around 80 drivers as of 6 a.m. Friday, Jan. 14, 2022.

“Mas makatabang kini sa panginabuhian sa atong mga driver tungod kay dili na makuhaan ang ilang income kay libre man ang charging. Sa kani nga pamaagi, mas mapadali ilang recovery (This really helps the livelihood of our drivers income-wise because the charging is free. This also aids them in their recovery),” Barangay Ermita Captain Mark Miral said.

Normally, e-trike drivers pay P250 to charge their vehicles for three to four hours, which would last them a day.

CPPC’s e-trike charging station can accommodate up to four vehicles at a given time.

E-trikes are among the primary modes of transportation around the Carbon Public Market in Cebu City and its nearby communities, giving locals an income-generating livelihood while helping in mobility within the market.

CPPC will continue to offer its free charging station until about 50 percent of Ermita’s households will be energized.

As of Jan. 10, Barangay Ermita estimated that only three of the nine sitios in the area had been energized.

CPPC’s free charging initiative was launched after the company met with the barangay officials and found that what the Ermita community needed during the typhoon’s aftermath was a charging station for e-trikes.

Ermita, CPPC’s host community, has scarce sources for charging stations. CPPC’s free charging station gives e-trike owners much-needed access to electricity and more income opportunities as they no longer have to pay for charging fees in the meantime.

CPPC operates and manages an oil-fired power plant located in the heart of Cebu City, embedded within the franchise area of Visayan Electric Company, and has the unique capability to deliver power directly to the distribution utility’s circuits and its customers.

To recall, CPPC went online last Dec. 18 to serve Visayan Electric, helping the distribution utility prioritize the energization of hospitals, water providers and other vital institutions in Cebu City.

CPPC was the first source of power in Cebu since the main transmission lines were down and power was not flowing into the city from generation facilities. When CPPC was operated, power was sent to the area of Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center, the largest government-owned hospital and vaccine storage facility in the city.

Because CPPC is embedded in the utility’s franchise area, the power it produces does not pass through transmission lines but rather goes straight to the circuits and customers of Visayan Electric.

Aside from providing free charging, CPPC also delivered 2,000 10-liter bottles of distilled water worth P250,000 to the northern Cebu municipality of Liloan last Dec. 29 as part of its post-calamity corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs. CPPC continues to extend more help through its CSR efforts to typhoon-hit areas in Cebu.