National Express Group has today (27/02) outlined its vision to become the UK’s most sustainable bus and coach company.
As part of its vision, the company also announced a series of pledges including to not buy any more diesel buses for its UK operations.
Their new vision follows the groups continued investment in Euro VI vehicles, with new vehicles being way ahead of Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone and London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone requirements.
Today the group announced:
- They will no longer buy diesel buses for their UK operations
- They will lead the transition to zero-emission coaches, with a target for the first electric coaches to be in service next year;
- An ambition that their UK bus and UK coach fleets will be fully zero-emission from 2030 and 2035 respectively;
- Environmental targets will make up 25% of senior executive Long Term Incentive Plans.
Dean Finch, National Express Group Chief Executive said:
“Bus and Coach travel is already one of the greenest ways to get around, with each bus removing up to 75 cars from the road. National Express has already invested in clean buses and coaches and kept fares low to support a shift from private cars to mass transit. Working through our West Midlands Bus Alliance we have achieved the fastest passenger growth of any major city-region in the country, demonstrating its success.
“However we understand the imperative to go much further, so we are today setting out an ambition to be the first zero emission transport group in the UK. Our decision to never again buy a diesel bus in the UK coupled with our support in leading the zero emission transition in coach will place our UK operations at the forefront of efforts to tackle climate change and poor air quality. We simply believe this is the right thing to do for our customers, the communities we serve and our stakeholders.”
Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, said:
“Working in partnership with National Express in the last three years we have managed to deliver an increase in passengers, brand-new buses, and fare freezes.
“Now I am delighted to be working with the company again to help tackle the region’s climate emergency. Air pollution is a major contributor to climate change in the West Midlands, and we need to make sure people across the region are being presented with clean, viable alternatives to the car.
“National Express have already done a brilliant job of upgrading their buses while keeping prices low, and the West Midlands Combined Authority and I will do all I can to support them to reach their zero-carbon pledge by 2030.”
Councillor Waseem Zaffar MBE, Birmingham City Council Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment, said:
“This is absolutely fantastic news for Birmingham and the West Midlands. As our draft Transport Plan sets out, we need bold leadership to meet the challenges cities like Birmingham face. At the heart of this is the need to encourage more people to switch to a cleaner and greener public transport network. With today’s announcement National Express has shown bold leadership. I look forward to continuing to work closely with them as we make Birmingham the most progressive public transport city in the country.”
The group will shortly launch a procurement competition to choose the manufacturers and partners to help achieve their ambitions.