CUTZEB to help Canadian transit agencies with buses
In Canada, a new organisation called CUTZEB, the Canadian Urban Transit Zero Emissions Bus joint procurement initiative, has been formed to support public transit agencies in procuring zero-emission buses and corresponding infrastructure.
The new organisation is a spin-off founded by the non-profit organisation Canadian Urban Transit Research & Innovation Consortium (CUTRIC). The spin-off CUTZEB is to support the procurement of both BEV and FCEV transit technologies and their respective charging and hydrogen fuelling systems.
“We knew that transit agencies wanting to electrify their fleets didn’t just want buses or chargers, but turn-key solutions — the buses, the chargers, the installation, the maintenance and everything in between. They wanted all of that in a package that could be delivered by a consortium, which is where the idea for CUTZEB emerged,” said Josipa Petrunic, President and CEO of CUTRIC and CUTZEB.
In March 2021, the federal Canadian government announced that between 2021 and 2026, it would invest a total of 2.75 billion dollars (around 1.8 billion euros) in the promotion of all-electric buses, including school buses and their charging infrastructure.
“CUTZEB will not only expedite commercial-scale deployment of ZEB technologies, but plans to complete multiple rounds of joint procurements to support the Government of Canada’s zero-emission bus target, all while bringing together small to mid-sized transit agencies,” explained Petrunic.
Chris Hill, Chair of CUTZEB’s Board of Directors and Program Manager for Fleet Planning with the City of Guelph pointed out that the new organisation will work to help transit agencies verify the performance claims of zero-emission bus manufacturers. “A well-planned procurement that includes electrical supply and charging equipment, as well as buses, is critical to the successful deployment of this new technology,” he said.
Canada is well positioned to completely transition its buses off fossil fuels. Not only is the country home to numerous raw materials for electric vehicle batteries, it is also has quite high potential for the expansion of renewable energy production and strong industrial stakeholders in zero-emission technologies.
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