The city of Nottingham, UK, will be receiving 78 zero-emission electric buses to electrify its city transportation fleet as part of a Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas fund (ZEBRA). The Nottingham City Council and Nottingham City Transport (NCT) were able to secure funding in the amount of £15.2 million to help achieve the city’s goal of reaching carbon-neutral by 2028, which is part of a total £34 million project.
The money is being used for the purchase of 78 new electric buses and to turn the Trent Bridge Bus Garage into a fully electric depot. The Trent Bridge Bus Garage has been in operation since 1901 and used to house horse-drawn carriages and electric trams back in the early days.
NCT has recently upgraded its fleet significantly, acquiring one of the largest biogas bus fleets in the country and converting older diesel buses. The NCT and others are excited about the purchase along with the fact that the new electric buses can run an entire day’s service on a single charge, further improving on their service and fleet to the citizens in the Nottingham area.
The Trent Bridge Bus Garage charging infrastructure will be supplied by Zenobē Energy, which specializes in EV fleet and battery storage. In addition to providing the site’s charging infrastructure, it will manage the construction, delivery, and implementation of its charging software.
Zenobē Energy will help in managing an effective service for Nottingham while also optimizing the fleet. The infrastructure will enable NCT to expand its electric fleet in the future, in line with Nottingham’s goals of going net zero. Zenobē Energy currently works with 90% of the major bus companies in the UK.
The NCT fleet’s first 12 entirely electric, zero-emission buses will be delivered by Pelican Bus & Coach and are expected to go into operation in late 2023. The buses will be manufactured by Yutong Bus & Coach, which has a lot of experience in manufacturing buses. The company says it has delivered over 133,000 zero-emission vehicles to date and has logged over 32 billion kilometers of operating experience.
The 12.2-meter buses will offer full electric air conditioning, full accessibility, silent travel with no engine vibration, and free Wi-Fi and USB charging stations on board.
As said earlier, all those involved are pretty excited about the new electric buses, and here are some statements made by those involved in the project
Liam O’Brien, NCT’s Head of Engineering, said: “Following a rigorous public procurement process and operational trials of several electric buses, Yutong Bus & Coach and Zenobē were a clear winner to deliver our first electric buses. The buses are superior in terms of space and comfort for passengers and have air conditioning as standard. With the software and charging service provided by Zenobē, the buses can do a full day’s operation on a single, overnight, charge, which is essential for ensuring we can keep them all on the road throughout the day, providing a better, cleaner service for our customers.”
Ian Downie, Head of Yutong UK at Pelican Bus and Coach, said: “We are absolutely delighted and honored to have been awarded this contract to work in partnership with NCT. The vehicles will be fully completed at our family-owned dealership in Castleford, and we look forward to supporting Nottingham on its zero-emission journey.”
Nottingham City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Highways, Transport and Parks, Councillor Audra Wynter, said: “These new state-of-the-art electric buses are fantastic news for Nottingham. Getting more people to use greener public transport is a key part of tackling the twin emergencies of toxic air pollution and climate breakdown. These electric buses will help Nottingham to reach our carbon-neutral 2028 goals while getting people around the city quickly and easily as part of our award-winning bus network.”
Steven Meersman, Co-Founder and Director at Zenobē said: “We’re thrilled to be delivering our first infrastructure in Nottingham and to be working in collaboration with Nottingham City Transport. We know that bringing 78 buses to the local area will have a huge impact on emissions and bring the City of Nottingham closer to its ambition of being carbon neutral by 2028. We are proud to be a part of this project. Working across the public and private sector is essential to scaling emissions faster, and we’re looking forward to delivering a greener service to the city.”
The NCT estimates when the electric bus project is fully delivered, around 3,800 tonnes of CO2e will be saved each and every year. That will help improve the air quality around the Nottingham area and could remove up to 31 tonnes of harmful NOx and 777kg of PM2.5 from the atmosphere.
Greener buses help to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, which has a significant effect on both the health of a population and the environment. Additionally, people travel more comfortably on newer buses and can enjoy the free WiFi and take advantage of the free USB charging. Nottingham is on track to become one of the UK’s first carbon-neutral bus operators and a carbon-neutral city by 2028.
Photo: Nottingham City Council
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