The UK Government has awarded £30m ($39m) in funding for cleaner, ‘greener’ bus journeys around the country.

Confirmed by Transport Minister Andrew Jones, bus operators and local authorities across England have been awarded a share of the funding to buy low emission buses and install charge points and other infrastructure. 

The 13 successful bidders taking part in the scheme will be able to add a total of 326 buses to their fleets and install more than £7m ($9.1m) worth of infrastructure. The buses will utilise a variety of ‘green’ fuels including hydrogen (H2), electric, hybrid and biomethane.

Birmingham City Council and Transport for London jointly won £2.8m ($3.7m) to roll out 42 state-of-the-art hydrogen (H2) fuel cell buses under the scheme. Other successful bidders include West Midlands Travel, Merseytravel and Nottingham City Transport who will roll out electric, hybrid and biomethane buses respectively.

The funding is expected to cover up to 90% of the difference in cost between a new ‘green’ bus and its diesel equivalent, as well as up to 75% of the cost of infrastructure.

Driving investment

Jones stated, “My message is clear – greener buses are good for passengers and good for British business. Low emission buses have already proved to be a real success across the country. They are cost efficient, good for the environment, and there are wider benefits.”

“We have provided more than £2bn ($2.6bn) of funding to greener transport schemes since 2011, and by supporting this technology the government is ensuring the UK is driving innovation and investment up and down the country.”

The government’s support for low emission buses is one part of a £600m ($787m) package of low-emission measures from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) by 2020.