Bus Éireann describes the transition from diesel to the urban fleet

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No new diesel-only buses will be purchased for Bus Éireann’s urban fleet, company chief executive Stephen Kent said as the company highlighted the role it could play in reducing carbon emissions. *

Highlighting Bus Éireann’s contribution to the government’s climate action goals, Mr Kent said that up to 12.6 million car trips are avoided each year by passengers choosing Bus Éireann services.

In addition, an additional 21.5 million trips were avoided each year thanks to the school transportation program, said Kent, who argued that Bus Éireann is making a significant contribution to reducing road congestion.

Mr Kent said that by 2025 around 50% of its urban fleet would be low-to-zero emission vehicles and 30% would be zero-emission, under his current plans.

But Mr Kent said the state-owned company plans to do more if the government meets commitments made in the national development plan to deliver new buses.

In addition, he said, “no diesel buses are currently purchased by the National Transport Authority in any regional city.” He said 40 diesel-electric hybrid buses “enter Galway” using 30% less fuel, while Athlone’s city buses will be “fully electric by 2022”.

A framework order for 800 double-decker electric buses is expected to be awarded in the third quarter of 2021 with vehicles entering service in 2023.

In terms of long-distance, regional or highway buses, he said hydrogen buses were “being piloted right now”. The hydrogen fuel was “exciting,” he said, as it offered faster refueling time than electricity.

Hybrid controls

He said the NTA’s procurement framework covering Bus Connects in regional cities and regional services already contained orders for 280 hybrid electric buses, with 89 buses currently in service in Galway and Dublin. A first order for 45 single-decker electric buses has been placed for operation in Athlone and Dublin.

“If we aim to reduce emissions, Bus Éireann is a major part of the solution,” he said.

Mr Kent was speaking as the company released a report by KPMG consultants which found that the company is already cutting more carbon emissions than it creates, by offering an alternative to the private car.

The study, the first glimpse into the company’s economic, environmental and social impact, revealed that Bus Éireann supports 2,700 direct jobs and 6,100 indirect jobs and has an economic impact estimated at nearly 270 million euros. , two-thirds of its gross value coming from outside Dublin. . The study also found that Bus Éireann’s services generate up to € 1 billion in “intangible” benefits, including leading workers to jobs and social activities.

Almost half of Bus Éireann passengers surveyed said they rely on services as their only travel option, and 83% agreed that Bus Éireann provides essential service for them and their families.

Seventeen million trips are for work, 19 million for social or leisure purposes and seven million for higher education. Four million Bus Éireann trips per year bring people to treatment, and the company has 1,130 bus stops within two kilometers of hospitals.

* This article was last modified on October 27, 2021


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