Public transport provider Arriva has revealed that it is “on-track” to achieve its decarbonisation ambitions across Europe, including a 2026 goal to reach zero emissions in Limburg, the Netherlands.
The company this week revealed that it has electrified half of its Limburg-based fleet, which is 200 buses strong.
Arriva has additionally introduced 23 new fully electric buses the historic Dutch city of Leiden, where it holds the concession to operate all public bus services, since the start of 2019.
Elsewhere in Mainland Europe, Arriva has also delivered 13 new fully electric buses to the rapid transport system in Helsingborg, Sweden, and a further five to Kutná Hora in the Czech Republic, since the start of June 2019.
The moves build on Arriva’s overarching and ongoing ambition to “use as little fossil fuel as possible” across the business.
To date, the company has reduced the nitrous oxide (NOx) emissions of its average bus by almost 50% and the particulate matter (PM) emissions of its average bus by 60%, against a 2010 baseline. Arriva attributes this progress to increased investments in fully electric, hybrid electric and hydrogen buses, as well as newer fossil-fuel-powered models which comply with the Euro 6 emissions regulations. These moves have been compounded with training programmes that educate drivers on how best to drive for fuel efficiency, as well as TomTom telematics systems that provide drivers with instant feedback on performance.
“Arriva is committed to reducing carbon emissions, both by encouraging more people to use public transport and by minimising our own environmental impact,” Arriva’s chief executive Manfred Rudhart said.
“By working closely with governments and partners, we’re introducing cleaner, quieter and more comfortable vehicles to our fleet across Europe in support of the climate change agenda and the transition to net-zero emissions.”
Throwing carbon emissions under the bus
According to the latest electric vehicle (EV) outlook from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), the transition to electrification is likely to grip the global municipal bus market even faster than it will the passenger car, van and truck markets.
The body has predicted that fully electric buses will account for 81% of sales by 2040, as battery costs fall and hydrogen technologies become more prolific. A further key driver of this trend will be new carbon and air quality regulations being implemented across city-regions globally, such as London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).
At a UK level, the UK Government has unveiled plans to purchase 263 new ultra-low emission buses for transport schemes across the nation, doubling the UK’s existing e-bus stock.
A total of £48m will be invested into new vehicles and infrastructure across seven towns and cities, in a drive to help the Government meet the aims of its Clean Air Strategy and Road to Zero plan. An additional £25m has since been added to the funding pot.