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Paris Fights Smog with 800 All-Electric Buses


Paris will fight smog with a massive purchase of electric buses.

The public transport network in Paris is about the receive a huge green boost. The local transport operator- RATP, promised the Parisians to clean the air they breathe.

The company will purchase 800 electric buses, which will operate on some of the busiest lines. The entire deal will cost around 400 million euros. The vehicles will come from three different companies- Heuliez Bus, Bollore and Alstom.

All buses should be on their start lines before 2024. This is the year when the city is hosting the Summer Olympics. The first 150 buses, however, are expected to be delivered already by 2022.

The ultimate goal of the city officials is to have replace all diesel and gasoline powered buses with a green alternative. The deadline for this is 2025. Unfortunately, not all buses will be electric, some will be powered by bio-fuels.

There are just under 5,000 buses operating across the city at the moment. RATP says that out of these, around 950 are hybrids, 140 are powered by bio-fuels, and some 83 are electric. When we add the 800 new electric buses to the mix, it would mean that the city will have to come up with something extra to replace the remaining 3000 and meet the goal.

I am sure they have it figured out, but I am not sure when we will hear about it. And do the hybrid buses count towards the final goal? It is also questionable, whether those buses powered by bio-fuels, are really as green as the official claim. Sure they are cheaper than the all-electric, but still.

I will not be picky here, though. I think the city is definitely making a huge step in the right direction. Thumbs up for all the efforts and I hope many more major cities follow this example.

Image (C) redit

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  1. Well this is not the city of Paris, this is a state agency. Paris has been moving toward cleaner transportation on what it can control, like banning all pre-2001 diesel vehicles from this summer on. But the RATP, i.e. the French government, has been nothing but totally reluctant to meet the goals that they promoted and committed to for the 2015 Paris Agreement. 83 electric buses out of 5,000 is peanuts.

    The 800 new electric buses are welcome, but they wanted 1,000 last year, so they already fell behind this deadline, and with 883 electric buses in 2024, there is just no way they can meet their own 100% “clean” (not “green”) buses target by 2025, the following year. Natural gas, bio-fuel and diesel-hybrids (that they kept buying until recently) are not “clean” by definition. We’ll get there eventually, but probably not before 2040-2050. There are just no such vehicles on the market, it’s all more or less hand-made like a Rolls-Royce, no mass production with economy of scale, no end-to-end process from sourcing the batteries to recycling them, no standardization, etc, These buses are terribly expensive.


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