Cape Town signs clean bus pledge

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

CAPE Town mayor Pa­tri­cia de Lille joined the city lead­ers of 11 world cities who have pledged to pro­cure only zero-emis­sion buses from 2025 and en­sure that a ma­jor area of their city is zero emis­sion by 2030.

Auck­land, Barcelona, Cape Town, Copen­hagen, Lon­don, Los Angeles, Mex­ico City, Mi­lan, Paris, Quito, Seat­tle and Van­cou­ver all signed the C40 Fos­sil-Fuel-Free Streets Dec­la­ra­tion last week.

The poli­cies are de­signed to fight air pol­lu­tion, im­prove the qual­ity of life for all cit­i­zens and help tackle the global threat of cli­mate change.

The cities com­mit­ted to: • in­creas­ing the rates of walk­ing, cy­cling and use of pub­lic and shared trans­port; • re­duc­ing the num­ber of pol­lut­ing ve­hi­cles on city streets; • lead­ing by ex­am­ple by procur­ing zero-emis­sion ve­hi­cles for city fleets; and • work­ing with sup­pli­ers, fleet op­er­a­tors and busi­nesses to ac­cel­er­ate the shift to zero-emis­sions ve­hi­cles and re­duce ve­hi­cle kilo­me­tres in cities.

Cities will re­port back ev­ery two years on the progress they are mak­ing to­wards the goals of the C40 Dec­la­ra­tion. C40 es­ti­mated that there are 59 000 buses of all types op­er­at­ing on the streets of the 12 cities.

Among them, Lon­don says it has the largest elec­tric bus fleet in Europe, with more than 2 500 hy­brid elec­tric buses made by China’s BYD and Bri­tain’s Alexander Den­nis.

In an ex­pand­ing mar­ket, other mak­ers in­clude Volvo, Mercedes-Benz Daim­ler and Proterra.

Caro­line Wat­son, an ex­pert in lowe­mis­sion ve­hi­cles at C40, said the dec­la­ra­tion is meant as “a clear com­mit­ment in writ­ing to raise the bar and give a sig­nal to the pri­vate sec­tor” to en­cour­age greener in­vest­ments in cities.

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