The UK government has issued a major new bus strategy and has pledged to invest £3 billion (€3.5 billion/$4.2 billion). Part of this investment includes 4,000 greener buses powered by electricity and hydrogen. The funding is to help cities and regions decarbonise their public transport and recover services.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the buses should be built in Britain as a way of “safeguarding the UK bus manufacturing industry”. The government wants to end sales of new diesel buses and has launched a consultation.
Partners for the 4,000 zero-emissions buses have not yet been announced. A partnership with ADL-BYD would appear the obvious choice as their range includes battery and fuel-cell electric buses that have already found favour with councils.
ADL-BYD recently announced they plan to build the entire chassis of their electric buses, solo and double-decker, for the UK market in British factories later in the year. They were previously made in China before being shipped to the UK for assembly.
As former Mayor of London, Johnson compared the programme to what Transport for London achieved in the capital. Similarly, the changes would include a simpler fare system, integrated services and an increase in the number of routes.
Johnson said: “Just as they did in London, our reforms will make buses the transport of choice, reducing the number of car journeys and improving quality of life for millions.”