£9.75 million awarded to retrofit cleaner exhausts for Scotland’s buses
Posted: 3 September 2020 | Sam Mehmet (Intelligent Transport)
The funding aims to support the green recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, whilst improving air quality and supporting the introduction of Low Emission Zones in Scotland’s four biggest cities.
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The Scottish Government has awarded over £9.75 million to 19 bus and coach operators to retrofit 594 vehicle exhausts in 2020/21 as it looks to reduce harmful emissions and air pollution.
The accredited retrofit technology helps reduce nitrogen dioxide and particulate emissions from older buses and coaches through the installation of specialist exhaust technology by accredited providers. These retrofits will achieve the latest Euro VI standard, which is the equivalent to emissions from a modern diesel bus. Transport Scotland and Energy Saving Trust will also be monitoring emissions performance from the retrofitted vehicles to ensure they perform effectively over time.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Michael Matheson, said: “The Bus Emission Abatement Retrofit Fund benefits Scottish retrofit businesses, our wider bus sector and helps protect public health. It is a high-impact fund which provides a powerful combination of immediate economic stimulus to our valued bus and coach sector and supply chain, whilst supporting our strategic air quality objectives by helping operators to comply with forthcoming Low Emission Zones.
“Each fully occupied bus in our towns and cities can remove the equivalent of 75 cars from the road. That is why buses are part of the solution to tackling congestion, improving air quality and reducing transport emissions – and it is why we are also funding bus priority infrastructure and providing additional support through our Scottish Ultra Low Emission Bus Scheme for greener and cleaner buses.
“For the lifespan of the current fleet, retrofitting offers immediate air quality benefits, making the vehicles compliant with the proposed emission standards of Scotland’s Low Emission Zones – which are vital in our efforts to protect public health from the harmful effects of air pollution in our city centres.”
Stewart McLean, Managing Director of Driveline – a business based in Grangemouth and a supplier of the accredited exhaust retrofit technology, added: “This is a great opportunity for Driveline to help Scottish operators improve their emissions and demonstrate the successful Euro VI product lines that Driveline now offers to the world.”
Claire McVicar, Environmental Officer at Lothian Buses, said: “We are fully committed to improving air quality across all our operations in Edinburgh and The Lothians through our ambitious Bus2020 strategy, in line with the Scottish Government’s Climate Change Targets. We are therefore delighted to receive this substantial funding contribution from the Scottish Government to assist us in achieving our environmental goals.
“Retrofitting a large number of vehicles will help us to continue to reduce our overall emissions and ensure that we are playing our part in improving the air quality in and around Edinburgh for the benefit of residents, workers and visitors to our capital city.”
Bus & Coach