Mayors Target Buses in a Bid to Lower Emissions
Cities around the world have started to target transportation, one of the biggest sources of carbon emissions, with an aim to introduce more environmentally-friendly vehicles and thus achieve cleaner urban areas.
To this end, the C40 Fossil-Fuel-Free Streets Declaration has been signed by the mayors of 12 major cities: London, Paris, Copenhagen, Barcelona, Milan, Vancouver, Quito, Mexico City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Auckland and Cape Town. All have, in this way, pledged to only buy zero-emission buses as of 2025 and to create considerable zero-emissions areas in their cities by 2030. The cities will be required to report on progress towards the C40 Declaration goals every two years.
Anne Hidalgo, Paris Mayor and C40 Chairperson, has explained that millions of people die in cities around the world due to air pollution from petrol and diesel engines. The combined efforts of citizens, businesses and city mayors, she said, can help create healthier, greener urban areas for the future generations.
C40 Board President and UN Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change, Michael R. Bloomberg, seconded this, declaring that transport is the biggest culprit of carbon emissions and air pollutions in cities. C40 Mayors, he said, understand that clean air is required to allow cities to thrive and that by making vehicles cleaner they can fight climate change and save lives.
The zero-emissions bus fleets of the future can be expected to consist mainly of electric buses, which are currently finding their place on a growing market.
C40 cities aside, there is one which has already set an impressive example for others to follow. Shenzhen, a city in China’s Guangdong province with a population of 11.9 million, has announced that the process to replace its entire fleet of more than 14,000 buses with electric vehicles will be completed by the end of 2017.
The move is expected to have a double benefit as, since smog forming emissions recently reported to be adversely affecting solar output in China are produced by buses and other diesel engines, replacing the buses with electric ones should also increase the amount of renewable energy produced.