Bus and Coach

Net Zero rural bus taskforce launched

26 July 2023 #Bus and Coach

The Confederation of Passenger Transport has set up a new taskforce to help rural bus services make a smooth and sustainable transition to zero emission technologies.

Over the coming months, the Rural Zero Emission Buses Taskforce will explore decarbonisation challenges in rural areas by bringing together bus operators, local transport authorities, the Department for Transport and energy and infrastructure providers.

Using an evidence-based approach, the taskforce will then identify potential solutions to help operators overcome them.

The bus sector has invested more than £2bn in Euro-6 and green bus technology during the last six years, while government’s ZEBRA scheme has leveraged investment of £233m from the private sector.

However, the current range of electric batteries, and a lack of refueling and charging points on roads and in depots, poses a significant challenge to operators that run longer distance zero emission vehicles across rural communities.

Jeff Counsell, Chair of the Rural Zero Emission Buses Taskforce, and former MD of Trentbarton and Kinchbus, said: “The road to zero presents many obstacles for all bus operators, however due to the extended range and topography of routes, our rural services face even greater challenges.

“I look forward to working with stakeholders from across the bus, infrastructure and energy sectors to name a few, to develop a strategy that will ensure our rural services can transition sustainably to zero emission technologies and continue to provide the valuable service for passengers in more remote areas.”

For more information, contact the Confederation of Passenger Transport.

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