London Mayor Sadiq Khan recently presided at the unveiling of a hydrogen-powered double-decker bus, as he committed to phasing out the procurement of diesel buses. No more pure diesel (non-hybrid) double-decker buses will be added to the capital’s fleet from 2018, and all new single-deckers for central London will be zero-emission.
London already has 79 zero-emission buses in its fleet (three routes are now completely electric) and has committed to procuring 300 more.
The new hydrogen bus, made by UK bus manufacturer Wrightbus, will undergo trials on London’s roads next year.
Mayor Khan is calling on other cities to follow London’s lead and work together to challenge manufacturers to produce more zero-emission buses and bring costs down. According to the Greater London Authority, 14 other major cities around the world have announced plans to phase out diesel buses.
“I want London to become a world leader in hydrogen and electric bus technology,” said Mayor Khan. “I’m implementing hard-hitting measures to clean up London’s toxic air and it’s great that more cities are getting on board to phase out the procurement of pure diesel buses, which sends a clear signal that only the cleanest technologies are wanted in our cities.”
Greener buses have higher up-front capital costs than dirty diesels. To address this issue, the C40 Climate Change Leadership Group of Cities will host a Finance Academy in April to help cities unlock funding for more zero-emission buses and the supporting infrastructure.
“I congratulate the cities of London and Paris on their far-reaching plans to deploy clean buses, and I encourage all cities to make use of European funding opportunities to support this transition,” said EU Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc. “Better cooperation of public authorities, operators, manufacturers and finance is needed now. Therefore, we are developing a deployment initiative for clean buses at the European level, including a platform to better align planning and investment.”
Source: Greater London Authority