Go-Ahead launches North East’s first fully-electric bus fleet
Go-Ahead says the new electric fleet demonstrates its backing to the UK Government’s “net zero” target, as the operator looks to reduce emissions in Newcastle and Gateshead.
Go-Ahead recently launched an all electric bus fleet in Newcastle and Gateshead.
The new fleet of electric buses on its Go North East services will provide 55,000 journeys a year to nearly 2 million passengers in the region, according to the operator.
The nine new electric buses will roll into service from today and will cover 300,000 miles across Newcastle and Gateshead each year.
Go-Ahead’s move reflects the company’s commitment to have a ‘net zero’ bus fleet by 2035.
Last year Go-Ahead introduced air filtering buses into Southampton. These buses suck particulate matter from the air and recently won a sustainability Fleet Champions award.
The company has also introduced more than 50 geo-fenced, extended range, double deckers into Brighton, which switch to zero-emission only in the city’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone.
In addition, Go-Ahead is in talks regarding what it says has the potential to be Europe’s biggest ever order of hydrogen buses for operation in Crawley and Gatwick.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “As we look to decarbonise transport while levelling up local economies across the North-East, I’m delighted to see key industry partners actively supporting our ambitions to end the UK’s contribution to climate change by 2050.
“Just last week the Prime Minister reaffirmed the Government’s commitment to invest £5 billion in buses, cycling and walking. And that’s not all – we’re also investing £120 million to begin the introduction of at least 4,000 zero emission buses, accelerating the decarbonisation of the bus fleet, reducing carbon emissions and improving air quality for all.”
David Brown, Go-Ahead chief executive, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has put an incredible strain on the country, the economy and public transport but tackling climate change remains as important as ever.
“The bus will be vital to getting Britain back on its feet, to bringing down emissions and tackling air pollution, which many experts believe has contributed to the severity of the virus we face.”
“Our investment in electric buses in the North East of England and our wider work in decarbonising our fleet signals our commitment to working with the Government to deliver their pledge to decarbonise transport and clean up the air that we breathe.”
Go North East will charge the buses overnight at its Gateshead Riverside depot. The operator says the buses are the result of a £2 million investment with top-up funding from the Government’s Ultra-Low Emission Bus Fund.
The buses also offer free WiFi and wireless and USB charging, as well as the introduction of tap-on, tap-off contactless payment.
Bus & Coach