Hydrogen wins out over electric buses: Abang Jo

Abang Johari taking a group photo with other dignitaries in front of the hydrogen bus before its launching in Kuching today. On his left is Lee.

By Peter Sibon

KUCHING, Jan 21: The Sarawak government has opted for hydrogen fuel for its public transport, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He stressed that the state had two options to consider for its public transport, electric or hydrogen fuel.

“The research was more in favour of hydrogen than electric because with electric, you have to dispose the battery. And batteries are also very heavy. If it’s heavy, then it will have problem going uphill. And the battery only can last between three to five years. And the battery contains lithium which is not friendly to the environment,” Abang Johari told a news conference after launching the Kuching City Hydrogen Bus Service at a leading hotel here today.

After making the first step to use hydrogen-fuelled buses, the chief minister said that the next step for Sarawak would be a much more efficient public transport system throughout Sarawak.

“And by 2025, we will also be going to have our autonomous rapid transit (ART), and plus in the city, we have this sort of buses. Then after this, we move to Sibu, Miri and Bintulu,” he disclosed.

Meanwhile, the chief minister said the Sarawak government understood the people’s frustration with the current lack of efficient public transport system.

“As you know, Transport Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin wanted to experience using the public transport, he waited for almost two hours, for the bus to come,” he said, explaining that Lee had also tested the efficiency of the bus transportation system in Miri and will be going on to Sibu.

“His ministry will promote to us what are the right options. Then, of course the next is road connectivity and air connectivity,” he added. —DayakDaily