£86.1 million London bus retrofit programme announced

The Mayor of London has announced today (28 June) an £86.1 million programme to retrofit around 5,000 of the capital’s bus fleet to meet the Euro VI emission standard.

Transport for London (TfL) will work with bus operators and five companies: Amminex, Baumot Twintec, Eminox, HJS and Proventia to retrofit buses across the capital to fit exhaust systems which are designed to reduce nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter.

The Mayor has set an ambition to have all 9,200 buses across London ‘zero emission’ capable by 2037

Diesel Particulate filters will also be installed alongside this Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) equipment to reduce air pollution.

The programme is due to be completed by September 2020.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “We know that pollution from our roads is a major contributor to London’s toxic air. That’s why we are working so hard to introduce new clean buses on our streets and why we are continually looking for innovative ways to clean up the most polluting buses.

“There’s no doubt that by cutting the emissions of more than half of the fleet by up to 95%, this innovative retrofit programme is going to make a huge difference to Londoners.”

More than 40 new apprenticeships are being created to support the programme. The apprentices will be employed by the five suppliers and will work across the project a range of areas, from installation and servicing to management.

‘Clean’

According to the Mayor’s office London has the ‘cleanest’ bus fleet of any major world city with a third of the fleet running on B20 biodiesel, 2,500 hybrid buses, 71 electric buses, and eight hydrogen fuel cell buses.

Last week the Mayor published a draft version of his long-term transport strategy, which included an aspiration to make London’s transport system ‘zero emission’ by 2050 (see airqualitynews.com story).

The strategy confirms that from next year, all new double-deck buses deployed in the capital will be hybrid, electric or hydrogen. In central London, all double-deck buses will be hybrid by 2019 and all single-deck buses will emit zero exhaust emissions by 2020. By 2037 at the latest, all 9,200 buses across London would be zero emission the Mayor’s Office has said.

Commenting on the retrofit programme, Leon Daniels, TfL’s managing director of surface transport, said: “Air pollution has reached unacceptable levels in London and we are doing everything we can to tackle the problem in one of the most ambitious programmes of its type.

“By retrofitting 5,000 buses – over half of our fleet – with the latest green engine technology, we will be able to reduce vehicle exhaust emissions significantly.  We will continue to take action to ensure London’s bus fleet remains the greenest and cleanest of any major world city.”