The climate crisis forces all of us to completely rethink the way we live. The way we move is a big part of this discussion, and it cannot be ignored.
The transport sector represents 40% of CO2 emissions in our cities. So we’re asking the world’s leaders and decision makers, what’s your plan?
On 16 September, UITP launched a global campaign addressing decision and policy makers, providing a four-step plan to reduce emissions and fight the climate crisis. With the huge support of our members’ community, we aim to ensure that each step of this plan is carefully integrated in every new climate action plan submitted by national governments in 2020. #ONEPLANet
Last week at the successful International Bus Conference in Brussels (Begium), the large-scale deployment of electric bus fleets was a major topic of discussion! This leads us to the third step of our plan to save the planet…
Step 3: Guarantee financial incentives and a regulatory framework for an emission transition
Governments need to provide incentive schemes to local public transport stakeholders to invest in electric vehicles and other clean-fuelled vehicles to reduce CO2 emissions.
Governments should set up funds to assist with the procurement of cleaner vehicles, but must start with implementing an institutional framework that is needed for the successful deployment of these technologies, considering the urban space needed for new charging infrastructure.
Did you know…?
The transition to zero emissions is already well underway. In July 2015, London (UK) announced that two further bus routes will operate entirely with electric buses from the autumn alongside hybrid buses, lowering carbon emissions and helping to improve London’s air quality by reducing 408 tonnes of CO2 and 10 tonnes of NOx per year. In 2016, all 800 New Routemasters were in passenger service, reducing CO2 emissions by 27,500 tonnes a year. Over 1,400 older buses have been retrofitted reducing their emissions by 88% and at the end of 2016, the world’s first double deck hydrogen bus was unveiled.
With a fleet of over 200 electric buses, London now has the largest electric bus fleet in Europe. Backed by the prioritisation of the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and the hard work of Transport for London (TfL), operators were able to invest heavily in this transition. London’s transport strategy aims to have 80% of all trips by either public transport, cycling, walking or zero emission buses by 2025. By 2050, London aims to have a zero emission transport system.
Through the Zero Emissions Urban Bus System (Zeeus) project, UITP supports the uptake of electric buses across Europe. Since April 2015, electric buses have been running on the demonstration line 14 in the City of Munster (Germany) with three fast charging stations primarily powered with green power from a photovoltaics facility. In October 2017, UITP launched the ZeEUS eBus Report#2 during the Busworld 2017 Expo in Kortrijk, Belgium (24 October 2017) which provides an overview of high capacity electric buses in Europe. In 2019, UITP opened a regional training centre in Shenzhen (China) which will specialise on bus planning and deployment, including on all aspects of electric buses.
The ASSURED project, in which UITP is a key partner, aims to develop and test high-power charging solutions for electric urban commercial vehicles. Recently, ASSURED has released a new report called ‘ASSURED 1.0 Interoperability Reference’, which should prove interoperability with different brands of e-buses and chargers – a major step towards the standardisation of e-bus charging. When cities and bus operators will be able to easily mix and match vehicle and charger brands, the large-scale market uptake of electric buses is one step closer.
Finally, UITP has recently released a Policy Brief on 'The Impact of Electric Buses on Urban Life', which details the benefits electric buses can bring to cities, and provides a better understanding of their various infrastructural impacts on urban spaces and space needs. It furthermore provides recommendations for the successful implementation.