Transport for London
World-first hydrogen double decker buses to help tackle London’s toxic air
Twenty British-built zero-emission hydrogen buses will arrive next year.
The world's first hydrogen double decker buses will be introduced on three London bus routes next year, helping tackle the capital's air quality crisis.
Transport for London (TfL) has ordered 20 of these green buses - which produce no pollution from their exhausts - as part of its drive to make London's transport zero-emission. It follows the introduction of the world's first Ultra Low Emission Zone last month.
The environment-friendly vehicles will be introduced on routes 245, 7 and N7, with people traveling to Wembley Stadium, or from west London to the West End, able to hop on the new green buses for a smoother and quieter journey. The new, modern buses will also enhance the customer experience, with on-board USB charging points making bus travel even more attractive.
TfL is investing £12m in the new buses and the fuelling infrastructure. Wrightbus in Northern Ireland will manufacture them, creating new jobs in the region. More than £5 million of funding is being provided by European bodies and £1 million from the Office of Low Emission Vehicles.
To encourage the take-up of this trailblazing technology in other cities in the UK and Europe, TfL is leading procurement within the 'Joint Initiative for hydrogen Vehicles across Europe' (JIVE) project. JIVE aims to bring down the cost of the vehicles by buying in bulk with other authorities - helping put the price per bus on a par with the other cleanest fuels.
Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, recently said:
“We all have a role to play in cleaning up London's toxic air and I've always said that TfL should lead from the front. Following the launch of the world-first Ultra Low Emission Zone last month I'm delighted that TfL has today signed a contract to bring 20 state-of-the-art, zero-emission hydrogen buses to London's streets. We are investing a record £85m in cleaning up our bus fleet, and I am proud that London now has the largest zero-emission bus fleet in Europe.”
As part of the Mayor's Transport Strategy, TfL is committed to using only the cleanest buses in its fleet. Ten Low Emission Bus Zones have been introduced, reducing harmful NOx emissions by 90 per cent on some of the capital's busiest roads. All of the buses in the Ultra Low Emission Zone and seventy-five per cent of the entire bus fleet already meets these standards, with all buses set to be upgraded by October 2020. This will make the whole city a Low Emission Bus Zone.
Greening transport in the capital will require using a range of clean power sources. Hydrogen buses can store more energy on board than equivalent buses, meaning they can be deployed on longer routes. They only need to be refuelled once a day for five minutes, making them much quicker to power up when compared with conventional battery-electric buses.
The double decker hydrogen buses will expand TfL's growing number of zero-emission buses. There are currently a total of 165 zero emission buses, with a further 68 electric double deckers on the roads by the summer. TfL has also recently announced that the route 323 will become fully electric next year, along with two further routes, which will be announced later this month.
Claire Mann, TfL's Director of Bus Operations, recently said:
“London has the cleanest bus fleet in Europe, but we know we need to go further and faster to tackle the public health emergency caused by dirty air. Innovating and using hydrogen means we have flexibility in matching the right fuel with the operational requirements of the network.
“We are also pleased to be leading an initiative that brings down the cost of buying the greenest buses across the continent and within our own country, as we know pollution doesn't respect national or local boundaries.”
Dr Penny Woods, Chief Executive of the British Lung Foundation, recently said:
"London's air is toxic, and it needs to change. We know air pollution is a threat to all our health, and children, the elderly and those with existing lung and heart problems are most at risk, so it's good to see the Mayor of London tackling the issue head on. This move to cleaner public transport, alongside the introduction of the ULEZ, shows London's leading the way in the fight to clean up the air we breathe and we look forward to seeing even more ambitious action from TfL."
Darren Shirley, Chief Executive of Campaign for Better Transport, recently said:
"Millions of people across the country live in areas which currently exceed legal limits for air pollution. Cities need to be doing more to improve their air quality, including investing in clean technologies as a matter of urgency. We welcome this move to clean up London's bus fleet and its polluted air.”
The bus network is central to Londoners breathing cleaner air. Buses are essential in reducing dependence on cars and are an efficient and affordable way of moving people round the capital's roads.
- The European funding is provided by the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU), and the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA), an executive agency of the European Commission.
- About the FCH JU: The Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) is a unique public private partnership supporting research, technological development and demonstration (RTD) activities in fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies in Europe. Its aim is to accelerate the market introduction of these technologies, realising their potential as an instrument in achieving a carbon-lean energy system. The three members of the FCH JU are the European Commission, fuel cell and hydrogen industries represented by Hydrogen Europe and the research community represented by the research grouping Hydrogen Europe Research.
- About JIVE: The JIVE (Joint Initiative for hydrogen Vehicles across Europe) project seeks to deploy 139 new zero-emission fuel cell buses and associated refuelling infrastructure across five countries. JIVE has received funding from the FCH JU (Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking) under grant agreement No 735582. This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, Hydrogen Europe Industry and Hydrogen Europe Research. This is the first out of two projects: The JIVE2 project started in January 2018. Combined, the JIVE projects will deploy nearly 300 fuel cell buses in 22 cities across Europe by the early 2020s - the largest deployment in Europe to date
Latest News from
Transport for London
New vision to revitalise South Kensington Tube station23/05/2019 14:25:00
Plans to enhance the historic surrounding space with new homes, shops and workspace.
TfL to give customers better information about their Tube journeys22/05/2019 16:05:00
Innovative pilot of collecting depersonalised Wi-Fi data in 2016 demonstrated how technology could be used to reduce crowding and prioritise transport investment.
Transformation of the dangerous Old Street roundabout22/05/2019 15:05:00
Some roads in the area will be closed from Friday 24 May to Monday 27 May to prepare for the switch to two-way traffic at the roundabout.
Most TfL services will be operating this late May bank holiday, but check before you travel21/05/2019 16:25:00
Over the late May bank holiday weekend (Saturday 25, Saturday 26 and Monday 27 May) there will be some service changes and essential improvement works on some parts of London's transport network. Some journeys will be affected, including travel to or from Heathrow Airport.
GLA – First month of Mayor’s ULEZ sees 74 per cent of vehicles comply17/05/2019 15:42:00
Since launching in the central London congestion charging zone on 8 April, the ULEZ has already driven a significant increase in vehicle compliance.
Bus network improvements during bridge restoration16/05/2019 14:25:00
Bus connections in the area are to be restored after emergency closure of the 132-year-old Hammersmith Bridge.
TfL challenges business with retail innovation competition14/05/2019 11:25:00
TfL challenges businesses to come up with an innovative and technological retail concept, offering retail space for one year to the winner.
TfL sets out proposals for major new Cycleway in east London09/05/2019 13:28:00
Proposals in the boroughs of Hackney and Tower Hamlets would transform roads between Hackney and the Isle of Dogs.