Continued progress for Low Emission Zones
A £7.8m fund to help bus operators comply with low emission zones (LEZs) has opened for business at www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/BEAR
The second phase of the Bus Emissions Abatement Retrofit Programme will significantly off-set the financial costs associated with the installation of accredited retrofitting technology to reduce emissions, and will contribute to the fitting of technology to monitor air quality from buses.
The first phase of the BEAR Programme in early 2018 made £1.6m available to retrofit technology, to reduce nitrogen dioxide emissions from older diesel buses to achieve the latest Euro VI emission standard.
Additionally, a total of £518k has been awarded to Dundee City Council, City of Edinburgh Council and Glasgow City Council to support work to introduce LEZs.
For the public, a new website – www.lowemissionzones.scot – has also been launched to provide national information on LEZs in Scotland.
The new website is the official home to national information on LEZs in Scotland. It explains what LEZs are, how they work, how they are developed and provide answers to a number of frequently asked questions. The website will evolve to reflect the progress of local authority planning and delivery.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said:
“By working in partnership with bus operators we can encourage a greener fleet and enjoy cleaner air. We are already seeing operators invest in new vehicles and this second phase of retrofit funding will help extend the life of around five hundred older buses, making them part of the solution to help improve the quality of the air in our towns and cities.
“This funding is in addition to the successful Scottish Green Bus Fund which has provided more than £17m across eight rounds of funding to introduce over 360 modern buses across the country.
“I would encourage everyone to visit www.lowemissionzones.scot to learn more about LEZs and how they will help improve air quality. No matter where you live in Scotland – if you travel to Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee or Aberdeen by car or van, it’s important to understand how the LEZs will work.
“For the youngest and oldest people across Scotland, and those with existing respiratory or cardiovascular conditions, air quality remains an issue. We are rising to the challenge of improving air quality by introducing LEZs in Scotland’s four biggest cities by 2020.”
Matthew Eastwood, Head of Transport at the Energy Saving Trust said:
“We are very pleased to be supporting the Scottish Government and Scotland’s bus operators by delivering Phase 2 of the BEAR programme. Public transport, especially buses, play a key role in keeping Scotland moving and are a significant part of the solution to air quality in our towns and cities.”