London will have the largest electric bus fleet on the continent, after it was announced that 68 new buses will be added to the growing network next summer.
The announcement of this new fleet of double decker electric buses was made at a historic summit in London, attended by cross-party leaders who represented approximately 20 million people across England and Wales.
This summit focused on the air quality health crisis and included the Mayor of London, the Environment Secretary Michael Gove, and other city leaders who discussed ways in which air quality can be improved.
Mr Gove has published his Clean Air Strategy to tackle air pollution, which is fourth behind cancer, obesity and heart disease in terms of threat to public health; in London, there is a conscious effort to tackle air quality, with a zero emission public transport network.
This will get even bigger when the double decker electric bus fleet is introduced – something that the Mayor, Sadiq Khan, says will increase by more than tenfold.
The latest fleet of 68 will be introduced next summer and the Mayor says that two of Metroline’s routes from Barnet to central London will be exclusively operated by the electric double decker buses.
Claire Mann, TfL’s Director of Bus Operations, said: “We’re committed to reducing emissions from London’s buses and making routes 43 and 134 exclusively electric is an important step to a zero emission fleet.
“Buses are crucial to reduce Londoners’ reliance on cars, and with this landmark order it means the largest pure electric double-deck bus fleet in Europe will help reduce emissions across the capital.
“Electric buses are good for air quality and improve the customer experience, with less noise and fewer vibrations, all creating a more comfortable journey.”
London is committed to an electric bus fleet, with 240 set to be running in the capital next year, as part of the drive to make sure all buses are zero emission by 2037.