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Why buy an electric vehicle? Rave reviews as Belize Electricity Limited launches investment in electric vehicle charging

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Posted: Thursday, March 31, 2022. 7:33 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: If one needed any particular reason for switching at this time to an electric vehicle for transport, vehicle owner Ruth Esquivel provided several, telling today’s gathering at the Belize Biltmore Plaza that she had seen the writing on the wall from a while ago.

“We all know that fossil fuels are very bad for the environment, and the countries that typically generate the most fossil fuels have poor, to say the least, human rights records. And also, it’s all external; so, there’s no way with a gas vehicle that you can locally generate power for your vehicle,” she said.

She took a chance with a second-hand vehicle and has had “zero problems,” getting support from the local Nissan dealer and an interested mechanic who taught himself online how to maintain the vehicle. She estimates an 80 percent cut in costs on gas prices that were significantly lower two years ago, and it brings the benefit of a quieter, easier to maintain vehicle – though she complained that the Customs taxes were the same as for a four-cylinder vehicle – and she would “never go back.”

Chad Dietrich, Managing Director of Caribbean Motors next door to the Biltmore on the Philip Goldson Highway, is not only hoping for more sales for his company, but a true national revolution in mobility. Quoting Steve Jobs, he lauded BEL for seeing opportunity, not threat, in this change and cited his company’s pioneering effort to import electric motor vehicles, of which two are on the roads in the City and on San Pedro Town. The manufacturers they work with, he said, have market-ready and affordable models in city buses, delivery and utility trucks, passenger and delivery vans and regular vehicles and sport utility vehicles (SUVs).

“Tomorrow really is here today,” said King Motors’ representative Leroy Gentle, emphasizing that preservation of the planet will involve effort and focus from all – and moves like these earn Belize more plaudits from supporters of a ‘green path.’

And general manager of the Biltmore, Ted Tejada, said BEL didn’t need to sell him on hosting the first charging station in Belize, considering the Biltmore’s reputation for environmental efficiency as the first hotel to install solar water heaters for example. While staying at the “Best” Western Plaza, he said, you can enjoy a meal or sleep knowing your vehicle will be recharging and ready to go when you are.

Plans are in train to introduce new electric models to join electric buses already in place in Belize City.

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