Electric buses are becoming increasingly popular with transit fleets around the world, but no more than in Shenzhen, China.
The megacity has been building a large fleet of electric buses for years now, but this week it announced that it completely electrified its fleet with more than 16,000 electric buses.
Shenzhen already had the world’s biggest electric bus fleet for a while and it has been expecting to reach its full electric fleet update in 2018, but it ended reaching its goal ahead of time.
The city’s transport commission made the announcement yesterday (via Han Ximin EyeShenzhen).
They now have 16,359 electric buses in operation around the city of 12 million people.
In order to achieve this goal, they invested hundreds of millions more than their usual fleet update to purchase a variety of different electric buses and charging stations.
The city has built 8,000 charge points at 510 bus charging stations in order to be able to charge roughly half the fleet at any given time.
They estimate that the fleet is saving 345,000 tons of fuel per year and it is reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 1.35 million tons.
But electric buses are not the megacity’s only electric vehicle effort, they have also put in place regulation to rapidly update their taxi fleet to electric vehicles.
Out of 12,518 taxis in operation in Shenzhen, reportedly 62.5 percent of them run on electricity and they plan to bring that number to 100 percent on an aggressive timeline.
Zheng Jingyu, head of the public transport department of the city’s public transport administration bureau, commented:
“We will gradually replace the existing fuel-powered cabs with electricity-powered ones and complete the target by 2020, or even ahead of schedule,”
While an ambitious goal, it wouldn’t be surprising considering their success with electric busses.
When it comes to EV adoption, we often cite Norway as a great example and it certainly is, but Shenzhen is impressive too – at the municipal level at least.
Earlier this year, 12 major cities pledged to only buy all-electric buses starting in 2025. While we applauded the effort at the time, we noted that it was actually not that aggressive since it will take years after 2025 for the fleets to be completed updated.
Now, it looks a lot less impressive after seeing what Shenzhen accomplished here. Let’s hope that more cities are looking implement similar changes.