19, 2013

NR # 3020B

Solon seeks bicycle use promotion to protect environment
In support of environmental protection, a House leader has proposed the promotion of bicycle sharing nationwide by granting tax exemption on the purchase and rental fees of non-fuel consuming bicycles, including electric ones. Rep. Roger Mercado (Lone District, Southern Leyte), Chairman of the House Committee on Transportation, said the use of fossil fuel has been tagged as the biggest contributor to carbon dioxide emissions that cause global warming. Hence, it is sensible to promote the use of non-fuel consuming bicycles according to him. Mercado said elevated carbon dioxide levels can cause global warming and the result is a devastating climate change. “We all seem to be complacent while knowing the consequences of neglecting the environment, but recent calamities like typhoons and heavy rains brought unprecedented levels of flooding and landslides that claimed the lives and properties of many, only heightened our concern,” he said. He said environmental protection is a concern for everyone. “We all know that when a forest is denuded, it could cause flash floods or landslides.” In House Bill 6891, Mercado said it is the declared policy of the State to protect the environment by promoting the use of non-fuel consuming bicycles nationwide. The measure proposed that all purchase and rental fees of non-fuel consuming bicycles and electric bikes shall be exempted from all forms of sales tax or similar tax. It further provides that local government units (LGUs) shall be mandated to grant exemption on permit and business fees on the construction and operation of Bicycle Sharing Centers or Clubs costing not more than P3 million, provided that such place is dedicated to the operation of sharing the use of non-fuel consuming (pedaled) and electric bicycles to its users or members. The bill is pending at the House Committee on Ways and Means chaired by Rep. Isidro Ungab. (30) rbb

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