Cape Town to earn carbon credits for electric bus fleet
Cape Town, one of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement participants, has issued tenders for the procurement of electric buses for its Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and feeder service, in line with its commitment to lowering carbon emissions. A tender for the procurement of a fleet of 12-metre electric buses was advertised in February. The city is also considering electric double-decker buses that provide more seating for longer distance trips. The tender specifies that the electric buses should be able to travel at least 250 kilometres in traffic before the batteries need recharging. Apart from the buses, the successful bidder must also provide the city with the charging stations for the buses and the necessary training for the bus drivers and mechanical engineers. “If all goes according to plan, Transport for Cape Town will be the first municipality in the country to benefit from the latest alternative fuel technology and we will be the first city in Africa to use electric buses for public transport,” said Patricia De Lille, Mayor of Cape Town. “This initiative directly supports the city’s commitment to the Paris Pledge for Action at COP21 and as member of the C40 Cities to take progressive action and lead the way in reducing energy consumption and emissions.” In addition to the carbon credits that the city will earn for operating a green fleet, Cape Town will be able to sell these onto developed countries that are signatories to the Kyoto Protocol, generating extra revenue for the city. “As we extend the footprint of the MyCiTi service across the city, we also have a responsibility to lower our carbon emissions and the impact of pollution on the urban environment,” said De Lille. “Cities across the world will soon reach a point where alternative fuel for public transport is no longer a choice but a prerequisite, and as such the City of Cape Town has decided to expand our current fleet of diesel buses with electric ones.” A spokesperson told Development Finance that the response to the advertisement has been encouraging and is confident that the city will have a number of applications to choose from once the application period closes in mid-April.
 
By Jonathan Andrews
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Photo: Warren Rohner