Environmental bus tour shows what zero emissions in Brighton & Hove’s city centre feels like

2 years ago Wed 16th Oct 2019

Around 60 people boarded one of our newest buses yesterday (Tuesday) to experience firsthand the UK’s first fleet of buses that can operate in zero-emissions mode whenever they travel through the city centre.

We have invested almost £10 million in 30 next generation extended range electric buses for the city’s popular route 5, which have been set to run in zero-emissions mode throughout the city’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ).

Guests, including environmental groups, local councillors, schoolchildren and journalists, embarked on an environment-themed tour of the city on the new bus.

They visited Dorothy Stringer School’s Eco School project and Moulsecoomb Forest Garden, which runs outdoor activities for people with learning disabilities and for kids struggling in conventional classrooms.

Dr Dan Danahar spoke about Dorothy Stringer’s environmental management schemes and butterflies while Warren Carter talked about how forest garden workdays could be therapeutic and bind communities together.

Our Managing Director Martin Harris said: “The tour marks the launch of our fleet of new buses and recognises the amazing environmental work happening in our city. It’s also about acknowledging that we’ll only be able to deal with this climate emergency if we work together.”

Martin explained that the new buses were the best choice for the city because they could cope with high daily mileage, large numbers of passengers and challenging operating conditions without needing to spend time recharging.

“This is not a small investment or a token gesture. It’s a big statement and a big commitment to reaching our goal of being zero emissions in the city centre by 2030,” Martin said.

“What we’re investing in is the future of our city and the people who live here, work here and visit. We want our environment to be cleaner than the one we grew up in.”

The buses are fully electric – an electric motor drives the bus at all times – but they use a small on-board Euro 6 diesel generator for recharging the buses’ batteries, when needed, fuelled additionally by regenerative braking.  

The buses will be rolled out by the end of October.