HYBRID and hydrogen-powered buses delivered 150,000 emission-free kilometres of passenger journeys on Limerick, Galway and Dublin commuter routes last year.
Diesel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions have reduced by 30 per cent as a result, according to Bus Éireann’s first annual Sustainability Report.
In Limerick, the environmental initiatives have gone a step further with the new administration building in Roxboro constructed to almost zero energy building standard.
According to a recent socio-economic impact report carried out by KPMG, Bus Éireann employs 150 people in Limerick and contributes €23 million directly and indirectly to the local economy as a result of its operations.
The company has started the process of reconfiguring its bus depots in Limerick, Athlone, Cork and Galway, to accommodate electric vehicles, in addition to training its craft workers to facilitate the transition from diesel to electric.
The 61 hybrid and three hydrogen buses procured by the National Transport Authority (NTA) are crucial to progress towards Bus Éireann’s plan to become one of the greenest national transport companies in Europe.
Among Bus Éireann’s other key targets are a 50 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by increasing the company’s low-emission fleet; improving the efficiency of its buildings and machinery; diverting half of its waste away from landfill and incineration; and increasing the school transport service by 20 per cent to reduce congestion on the national road network.