Electric buses announced for “the transition to a zero-emission bus fleet”
Transport chiefs have announced the groundbreaking purchase of 120 new all-electric buses for Ireland.
The landmark €80.4m deal with Antrim’s Wrightbus aims to help the country decarbonise its transport fleet.
Around 100 of the new buses are for the Dublin metropolitan area and the other 20 are for Limerick with Bus Éireann.
They are expected to enter service next year.
what was said
The deal was announced on board a Dublin bus on Monday morning.
Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said: “Switching to electricity will reduce the carbon footprint of our public transport fleet and help us meet our long-term climate goals, as set out in the Action Plan for the climate.
“These new electric buses will also help reduce air pollution, improve public health and improve access to public transport for people of all abilities.
“I look forward to seeing cleaner, greener buses in service in our cities.”
Feljin Jose of the Dublin Commuter Coalition says he is “delighted to see the fleet go zero emissions”.
“It will mean less emissions, less pollution and less noise,” he added.
“This, combined with the deal for 200 single-decker electric buses signed last year and the ongoing procurement for another 150, will transform our cities.
“While most of these buses will replace older buses, this order will also increase the size of the fleet.
“This is necessary to ensure the continued increase in service that is occurring under BusConnects over the next two and a half years.”
Promise of 800 buses
A total of 800 electric buses have been pledged across Ireland as part of a series of climate, transport and development strategies.
These latest additions to the public transport fleet will join three hydrogen buses that hit the streets last July.
Cork, Galway and Waterford could benefit from future orders, according to the National Transport Authority (NTA).
NTA Chief Executive Anne Graham said: “The transition to a zero-emission bus fleet is a central part of our BusConnects project, and the purchase of these battery electric buses represents a key step in this process. .
“There is no doubt that people are counting on us to provide better and more sustainable transport alternatives in all areas, and it is incumbent on us as an Authority to respond to this demand in a positive way.
“In doing so, we will reduce the need for personal vehicles, making the quality of the air we breathe healthier for everyone.
“When it comes to climate action, we at the NTA want to play our part and we want to lead by example,” she added.
“We are achieving this by transitioning our public transport fleet from fossil fuels to zero-emission technologies and, as you can see today, we are making real progress.
“This process is already underway, and when completed in 2035, it will lead to a massive reduction in emissions from public transport.”
As part of the process, the necessary charging infrastructure will also need to be installed.
The NTA says work, as well as training for the new buses, will begin later this year.
Neil Collins, Managing Director of Wrightbus, said: “We are extremely proud of this historic agreement, which is extremely important for Ireland’s decarbonisation ambitions and for us here at Wrightbus.
“This agreement further cements the reputation we have built in the zero emissions sector, and closely follows historic agreements in Australia and Germany.
“It shows our ambition to be at the forefront of the zero emissions campaign in cities and rural areas around the world.”
At the end of the line
The zero-emission buses will accommodate up to 65 people, have a permanent space for wheelchair users and additional space for pushchairs as well as free Wi-Fi, charging sockets and accessories. a screen to display passenger information in real time.