Innovation and Efficiency

06.02.20

Government reveals £50m plan for all electric buses

The government has revealed that councils can now apply for a £50m grant to replace their existing buses with all electric buses.

The plans would mean that the chosen town would be the first in England to have an all-electric fleet of buses.

The £50m grant is part of a wider £170m set aside to improve bus services in England, making them greener, easier and more reliable.

Commenting on the announcement by the Department for Transport of a £170m fund for buses, Darren Shirley, Chief Executive of Campaign for Better Transport, said: "We welcome this funding which will help to reconnect communities and make bus travel greener, easier and more convenient. Relied upon by millions of people, buses have been sidelined by Government for too long. We hope this much-needed funding package will be followed by a long-term funding settlement to set our most-used form of public transport on the road to a brighter future."

According to Forbes, the average cost of an electric bus is $750,000 (approx. £580,000), meaning the £50m will pay for approximately 86 buses.

Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, added: “Britain’s first all-electric bus town is just the start. Helping deliver on our manifesto promise, this £170m package will help us to create communities which are cleaner, easier to get around and more environmentally friendly, speeding up journeys and making them more reliable.”

There is also £20m being made available to encourage council’s to trial on-demand ride sharing. This is to get around limitations that traditional bus timetables can have in suburban rural areas. Oxford and Liverpool already operate an Uber-style bus service.

As well, a further £30m is being split across councils to improve their current bus services and/or restore lost services.

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