Helping Support Canberra to Transition to Zero Emission Buses

The ACT Government has released a roadmap to transition their bus fleet to zero emissions, as part of their commitment to achieve net zero emissions in the Territory by 2045, and 2040 for Government emissions.

This Zero Emission Transition Plan for Transport Canberra responds to the emissions targets set out in the 2019-2025 Climate Change Strategy, with an interim target of 33 per cent reduction by 2025. Transport Canberra buses comprise around 3 per cent of total emissions in the ACT but are responsible for over 50% of ACT Government emissions.


WSP was engaged by Transport Canberra to develop a plan to transition the government bus fleet to zero emission, a strategic priority set out in the Zero Emission Transition Plan. The Transport Canberra public transport network is at the core of the nation’s capital integrated transport system, with 1.3 million trips daily, of which 85,000 are on public transport. With a growing population and increasing costs to maintaining a less reliable and poorly regarded fossil fuel powered bus fleet, Transport Canberra believe the move to this new more sustainable fleet will attract new customers.


“The ACT is leading the nation when it comes to managing climate change and the environment,” Minister for Transport Chris Steel said.


“This ambitious plan will see ageing diesel and compressed natural gas buses phased out and replaced with modern battery electric buses powered with the ACT’s 100% renewable electricity.


Our advice focused on identifying and evaluating the preferred scenario(s) for transitioning the fleet, taking into account the current bus network and future bus operations, analysis of current and emerging zero emission bus technology, the need for new bus depot and electrical grid infrastructure, and identifying the financial, economic, social and procurement aspects of implementing a zero emission bus fleet.


We applied a range of custom-built evaluation tools including the Battery Optimisation Lifecycle Tool (BOLT), which analyses the electrification and optimisation of vehicle fleets; and WSP’s zero emission bus Triple-Bottom-Line tool. These specialist tools and our extensive experience in planning and delivering zero emission bus transitions around the world allowed WSP to advise Transport Canberra on all aspects of the transition plan.


“WSP is proud to be a key part of the ACT Government’s move to a zero-emission bus fleet, powered by green energy,” said Cindy Williams, WSP’s Regional Director for the ACT. “This is an exciting new field and every city considering a move to zero emission buses is an early adopter. WSP is able to bring our extensive international and domestic experience and specialist tools to help chart a low-risk, high reward transition to a zero emission bus fleet.”


For further information, contact Brian Smith or Cindy Williams.

For further information, download our white paper here.

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