Earlier this year several Rivian R1T trucks made their way to Africa, arriving in the east African country of Kenya in May. Those electric pickup trucks are now being used by the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust (MWCT) to help carryout eco-friendly conservation work throughout the south-eastern region of the country.
The group received four R1T vehicles as part of the pilot project, all of which are currently working in the Chyulu hills of Kenya.
The quiet electric motors helps rangers conduct anti-poaching patrols, as well as produce zero tailpipe emissions when transporting rangers to conduct their health and education programs.
Quiet operations and zero emissions are not the only benefits as the group can also use the R1T as a mobile power source, allowing them to plug in their equipment in the middle of the African wilderness.
“Rivian’s support of MWCT is already playing a significant role here in Kenya, helping us to carry out our work in conservation, education, health, and livelihoods initiatives. The R1T is the perfect vehicle for us — with zero tailpipe emissions and essential features such as electric sockets in the vehicle so we’re able to plug our equipment directly into the vehicles without the need for an external power source,” said Luca Belpietro, Founder and Executive Director of the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust.
The pilot project will soon expand to include the R1S electric SUV. To support the ongoing operations for the R1T and soon the R1S, Rivian charging infrastructure will be added.
Continuing with their goal of using clean energy to power their vehicles, the company will also install a solar array to power the chargers.
“For Rivian, this partnership with the Maasai people is about extending our collective impact – taking extraordinary steps, even before selling a single vehicle outside the United States, to explore the unique opportunities for community-based social and environmental change our trucks and SUVs can help make possible. We feel honored to be able to put our new tools and resources to work in the protection of some of Africa’s most iconic and important land, wildlife and culturet,” said Rivian Chief Sustainability Officer Anisa Costa.