15 million for greener buses

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£15 million of government funding has been announced for greener buses by Transport Minister Norman Baker.

It is expected that this will save up to 50,000 tonnes of CO2.

The winners of the second round of the Green Bus Fund – which aims to encourage and help bus operators and local authorities to buy new hybrid and electric buses – will now be able to purchase around 170 vehicles which will operate in most main cities and some rural areas by March 2012.

The funding will help towards the additional up-front cost of buying low carbon buses, and provides the capital investment required to bring down costs for operators.

Local Transport Minister Norman Baker said: “Low carbon buses use at least 30 per cent less fuel and emit nearly a third less carbon than a conventional bus, yet they currently make up just 0.2 per cent of buses on the road. This sector therefore has tremendous potential to reduce the impact of road transport on climate change. The Green Bus Fund is vital to unlocking this potential and will also stimulate a growing market.”

The first round of the competition saw 24 bidders share £30 million, which is helping to support the purchase of around 350 new low carbon buses. Buses supported by the scheme are now in operation in Oxford, Manchester and Durham.

The winners for the second round are as follows:

Bidding organisation                                                 No.     Grant

Transport for London                                                 54     £5,000,000
Stagecoach North East                                              26     £2,225,820
Stagecoach Yorkshire                                                21     £1,882,015
Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive      19     £1,594,450
Oxford Bus Company                                                17     £1,298,375
East Yorkshire Motor Services Limited                          8     £794,400
First Bristol Somerset and Avon                                   8     £621,863
Manchester Airport Group                                           5     £527,840
Bakerbus (Stoke-on-Trent and Stafford)                       3     £317,250
Nottingham City Council                                             2     £216,900
Dorset County Council                                                2     £166,600
University Bus Limited (St Albans)                               2     £138,000
Reading Transport Limited                                           1     £115,200
Johnsons Coaches (Stratford-upon-Avon)                      1     £80,100

Total                                                                      169     £14,978,813

More information about the fund is available on the Green Bus Fund webpage at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/regional/buses/greenbusfund