Environmental Investment Center calls for purchase of new electric buses

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One of the Solaris electric buses tested in Tallinn earlier in the summer. Source: TLT

On Monday, the Estonian Environmental Investment Center (KIK) announced a €4 million project proposal for the purchase of electric buses to operate on urban routes and for the creation of a recharging network.

The deadline for proposals is May 10 and the rate of support is capped at 50 percent, according to KIK. Eligible for support are projects which will see at least eight low-floor buses purchased for operating public urban bus routes for at least five years. The minimum average yearly mileage must be 40,000 kilometers.

The support can also be used for the purchase and construction of recharging infrastructure and for data analysis. Funding can be sought by local governments, public transport centers and other competent institutions and carriers operating urban routes within the meaning of the Public Transport Act.

Estonian Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas (Center) said in a press release that in addition to emission-free transport, the new buses will also provide an opportunity to analyze their consumption and recharge data and contribute towards further smart development of electric transport.

"In the long-term perspective, we're switching all regional public transport to renewable energy by 2030," he said.

Head of the KIK Andrus Treier said that Estonia strives towards increasing the share of renewable energy in transport to 14 percent by 2030.

Public transport plays an important role in this, and as KIK has experience with biomethane filling-stations as well as support for buses and electric cars, it is only logical that as the entity in charge of funding for environmental and climate initiatives, it should assists the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications to implement the support plan, he said.

Project coordinator at KIK Kristjan Kalda said that in addition to reducing emissions, electric buses also help decrease both noise levels in the city as well as the import of fuels, while increasing the consumption of locally produced energy.

The support, funded from the resources of the emissions trading system, has been developed by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications.

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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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