Over 400 Birmingham buses to get pollution busting tech

The West Midlands Combined Authority has been awarded £4.5 million to retrofit more than 400 buses in Birmingham and Coventry with kits that tackle exhaust emissions.

Part of the government’s Clean Bus Technology Fund, the £3 million funding for Birmingham is being matched from four bus operators – National Express West Midlands, Diamond, Claribels and First – to install kits on 364 vehicles. The remaining £1.5 million is being used by Coventry City Council to retrofit 104 buses with a £240,500 match-funding contribution by National Express Coventry.

The technology works by capturing harmful particulates and nitrogen dioxide gases from the vehicle’s engine. Once installed, harmful emissions coming out of the exhaust are reduced by as much as 96 per cent, making the air coming out of the exhaust cleaner than the air in the city outside.

Roger Lawrence, lead member for transport, said: “This is fantastic news and a very welcome addition to the bus fleet of the West Midlands. Reducing bus engine emissions is key in tackling the hugely important issue of air quality in city centres. It is also a priority of the West Midlands Bus Alliance, which is working hard to raise standards across the region.”

Stewart Stacey, cabinet member for Transport and Roads, at Birmingham City Council, added: “Public transport plays a key role in encouraging people to leave their cars at home and use alternative methods to get around, which helps tackle congestion and the impact of vehicle emissions on our city. It’s great news that, in addition to the 20 new super clean hydrogen-fuelled buses we announced late last year, four operators will be retrofitting emission-reducing kits to more than 360 buses serving the city centre, demonstrating their commitment to helping improve air quality for Birmingham’s citizens.”

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