Alternative energy taxis: Bangladesh capital of Dhaka has thousands of CNG tuktuks

Following up on my post this morning and last week about hybrid taxis in NYC and SF, reader Mehdi Hassan posted a comment about compressed natural gas (CNG) taxis in Bangladesh, where he lives. The "taxis" look somewhat different, as the standard taxi in Dhaka (Bangladesh's capitol) is a three-wheeled trike similar to Bangkok's tuktuks, but the gasoline versions were blamed for much of the pollution in the city. In 2001, a local company started to introduce a fleet of taxis that run on CNG. After initial issues with CNG refueling network and a ban on the two-stroke engines that powered the standard taxis, there are now tens of thousands of CNG taxis in Dhaka.

Pollution is a serious issue in Dhaka, as the World Health Organization estimates at least 15,000 people die in Bangladesh each year because of air pollution. If would be worse, but the main form of transportation in Dhaka is non-motorized cycle rickshaw, of which there are at least 320,000.

[Hat tip to Mehdi Hassan, Note: The photo is from India, not Blagladesh, but does show a CNG Tuktuk]

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