Electric buses are one step closer in Oxford

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Various electric buses have been trailed in the city, including this Yutong E12. OXFORD BUS COMPANY
EDF Renewables UK and Go-Ahead’s Oxford Bus Company have signed an agreement for the provision of an 8mW connection to the operator’s Cowley bus depot, enabling the introduction of an electric fleet of buses for Oxford. The deal is the latest stage of the Energy Superhub Oxford urban decarbonisation project, a four-year project which has included the creation of a new battery storage system, a high-power private wire charging network and an electric vehicle charging hub at the city’s Redbridge park & ride site.

With co-funding from Go Ahead, Oxfordshire County Council and the Department for Transport’s Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA) scheme, Oxford Bus Company has ordered 104 new electric buses to begin arriving on Oxford’s streets from late 2023. To enable the buses to charge overnight, depot charging infrastructure will be powered by the EDF substation at Oxford Bus Company’s Watlington Road depot, which was installed and connected in spring 2022 in anticipation of the agreement reached this month.

Oxford Bus Company Managing Director Luke Marion said: “Go-Ahead Group and Oxford Bus Company’s ambition to transition to a zero-emission fleet has been in planning for several years already. This agreement with EDF Renewables UK takes us one step closer to having more electric buses in Oxford, and is a key milestone in our exciting electric transformation journey.”

Marianne Costigan, Head of Private Wire at EDF Renewables UK, added: “Energy Superhub Oxford has given the city a breadth of opportunities to decarbonise and combat climate change, and we’ve already seen considerable success with the EV charging hub. Electrifying Oxford’s buses by taking advantage of the high voltage connection enabled by Energy Superhub Oxford will significantly improve air quality in and around the city and boost the already key role that buses play by replacing cars. Together, the changes brought about by Energy Superhub Oxford will have truly accelerated the region’s journey towards net zero.”