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More low emission buses for Nottingham, Leeds

Wed 21 December 2016 | Back to news list

The low emission bus market gathered further pace with the news that a further 13 new electric buses entered service in Nottingham and a £71m pledge from First promised the arrival of 284 low emission buses in Leeds by 2020.
Thirteen new electric buses have been added to Nottingham’s existing fleet of 45 electric vehicles, turning another two park and ride services into fully zero emission services. The Chinese-built BYD eBuses will run on the CentreLink and EcoLink routes which have been designed to cut the amount of traffic entering the city centre.
The current fleet of 45 Yorkshire-built Optare electric buses have saved over £300,000 in fuel savings and an estimated 1,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases since their introduction in 2012. The investment in these zero emission buses is a part of Nottingham’s bid to reduce both greenhouse gases and improve air quality. With an expected Clean Air Zone to be in place by 2020, they are an essential part of the local authority's anti-pollution strategy.
The £15m project has been partly funded through the last round of the Green Bus Fund, the City Council’s Workplace Parking Levy and a number of other sources, including OLEV funding. This has enabled an expansion of the fast charging infrastructure for buses across the city and at Queens Drive Park and Ride.  
(Steve Cornes of Nottingham City Council recently presented the details of this project at LowCVP’s UK eBus Summit . To see his presentation follow this link.)
Bus Operator First West Yorkshire has announced plans to commit £71m of investment in new Low Emission Buses for the city of Leeds by 2020. First aims to bring 284 brand new low emission buses which Leeds City Council expect to reduce bus-related NOx emissions by 87%.
The City Council aims to double bus passenger patronage in the next 10 years, an ambitious task given the steady decline of bus passenger journey’s nationwide. Since 2009/10, bus patronage across England has dropped by around 1% year-on-year.  
Large numbers of investment projects to counter this decline have begun, such as Manchester's guided busway, the Metrobus scheme in Bristol and even bus-sensitive traffic lights in the West Midlands.  
The LowCVP has worked closely with the Department for Transport to create the Low Emission Bus Accreditation Scheme which requires buses to have the latest Euro VI engines as well as producing 15% less greenhouse gases on a well-to-wheel basis. (To find out more about the Low Emission Bus Scheme, visit LowCVP's Low Emission Bus Portal.)
Meanwhile, LowCVP member First Group has achieved recognition at the recent North of England Transport. First won a number of awards for its investment in low emission bus operations. First York won the sustainability award for its all electric park and ride services in York while First Manchester won Project of the Year award for its Vantage services, where 4.5 miles of the route runs on a guided busway on what used to be an old railway line.  (Transport for Greater Manchester and Wigan, Manchester and Salford city council’s were also named significant contributors in this award.)
First also claimed the Contribution to Sustainable Transport award, which comes on top of their achievement in winning Operator of the Year award at LowCVP’s Low Carbon Champions Awards in September.

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