The government of the Australian state of New South Wales plans to electrify Sydney’s bus fleet of around 8,000 vehicles. The government is currently awarding new contracts for the provision of bus transport services throughout Sydney.
Currently, most of Sydney’s buses run on diesel. The city of 5 million inhabitants on the east coast of Australia will be renewing contracts with the current services as most of them will expire by 2022. With the new contracts, the government intends to give the go-ahead for the planned conversion to a purely electric bus fleet.
All in all, bus transport in the greater Sydney area is covered by 13 contracts, ten of which are private and three public operators. Andrew Constance, New South Wales Minister of Transport revealed: “I’ve challenged the world’s leading public transport operators to bid for all 13 Sydney bus contract regions over the next three years – which includes the three remaining State Transit government-operated regions.”
This is one of the first concrete actions by the Australian government to achieve the state’s goal of near climate neutrality by 2050. The newly-elected New South Wales transport minister claims the electric bus fleet will set standards in terms of air and noise pollution. The initiators want to orient themselves on “leading European cities”, which have shown that a quick transition to emission-free buses is possible.
So far there are very few electric buses on the road in Australia – and if there are, they are generally only being used for test purposes. The exceptions here are the airports in Sydney and Brisbane, where electric shuttles are already in use. The fact is that there is still a lot of convincing to be done in Australia when it comes to electromobility. The Western Australia government, for example, responsible for a state that takes up the entire western third of the country but only around 10 per cent of the country’s population has recently decided to buy more diesel buses.
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