Government has announced £12 million funding for 213 new low carbon buses to cut carbon emissions, encourage economic growth and provide better services for passengers. The move will come as a welcome boost to the UK bus sector where registrations are down almost 30% versus a strong 2012.
Bus passengers in England are set to benefit from cleaner, greener bus journeys thanks to the fourth round of the Green Bus Fund announced by Local Transport Minister Norman Baker.
The Green Bus Fund aims to cut greenhouse gas emission levels and encourage bus operators and local councils to make the switch to more environmentally-friendly buses. In total, four rounds of the fund, worth £87 million, will have delivered more than 1,200 new low carbon buses in England, saving around 28,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.
Government is paying up to half the cost difference between low carbon diesel-hybrid and biomethane gas buses and their standard diesel equivalent.
Five bus manufacturers will benefit from orders for their eco-friendly hybrid, electric and gas buses, with many of them being assembled in the UK. The manufacturers which stand to benefit are Alexander Dennis Limited, BYD, Optare, Scania and Volvo.
The winners, who will add 83 single-decker and 130 double-decker buses to their fleets, are spread across England and include Stagecoach and First Group. The local councils involved in the initiative include the City of York, Greater Manchester, Nottingham City and Transport for London.
Norman Baker has asked the department to explore options for further green initiatives to make full use of the remainder of the available funding in this financial year.
Local Transport Minister Norman Baker said, “Buses are an essential part of people’s day-to-day lives up and down the country and are a key tool for enabling economic growth. At the same time, we want this growth to be green, which is why we are investing in these brand new low carbon buses.
“The last 3 rounds of the Green Bus Fund have shown that bus operators and local authorities are keen to invest in environmentally friendly technology, and it is encouraging to see this strong interest in ultra-low emission vehicles continuing through the fourth round of the fund.”
- City of York Council – 2 fully-electric single-decker buses
- Courtney Coaches – 2 diesel-hybrid double-decker buses
- First Berkshire – 5 diesel-hybrid single-decker buses
- First York – 6 fully-electric single-decker buses
- Nottingham City Council – 15 fully-electric single-decker buses
- Reading Transport Limited – 14 biomethane gas single-decker buses
- Selwyns Travel Limited – 6 diesel-hybrid single-decker buses
- Stagecoach Manchester – 38 diesel-hybrid double-decker buses
- Stagecoach North East – 17 biomethane gas single-decker buses
- Transport for Greater Manchester – 3 fully-electric and 10 diesel-hybrid single-decker buses
- Transport for London – 4 fully-electric single-decker and 90 diesel-hybrid double-decker buses
- Yorkshire Coastliner Limited – 1 fully-electric single-decker bus