Scotland makes £9m available for green buses

Scottish Government has opened a new Scottish Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme, making £9 million available to help bus operators invest in ultra-low emission vehicles.

This Scottish Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme is an evolution of the Scottish Government’s Green Bus Fund. Through the Green Bus Fund, £17 million was invested between 2011 and 2018 to help operators overcome the initial capital costs of new buses. This scheme supported the introduction of nearly 500 cleaner buses across Scotland.

This new initiative focuses on ultra-low emission technologies (hydrogen electric or fully electric propulsion). Accelerating the deployment of electric buses is in line with Scotland’s ambition to move to net-zero economy. The Scottish National Investment Bank is being established to support and enable the transition to net zero and will look to leverage additional private finance to deliver its missions. The Bank will also have the ability to offer patient capital, on a commercial basis. Commercial bus operators are encouraged to contact [email protected] or other financial institutions, as part of their application for grant support.

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Michael Matheson, said: “The Scottish Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme will support bus operators and bus manufacturers in what I know is a turbulent time for the industry. The investments we will make this year will help drive forward a green recovery in Scotland while supporting our air quality objectives and our world-leading climate targets.

“With around three-quarters of all public transport journeys made by bus in recent years, equating to some 380 million trips across Scotland in 2018/19, it’s always been clear to me how critical our bus industry and its supply chain is to our wider transport objectives outlined in our National Transport Strategy.”

Paul White, Director for CPT in Scotland, said: “While COVID-19 has presented immediate challenges for our sector we cannot lose sight of important elements of public transport policy such as air quality, decarbonisation and patronage growth. The launch of SULEBS is an important step in retaining the momentum for meeting these objectives and the wider National Transport Strategy vision.”

Full guidance on the Scottish Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme can be found here.

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