The world’s first hydrogen-powered double-decker set to enter service has been revealed in Aberdeen, where it will undergo a period of final testing and driver training, with the buses expected to be in service next month.
Aberdeen City Council Co-Leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: “We are very proud to bring the world’s first hydrogen-powered double-decker buses to Aberdeen as it shows the city continues to be at the forefront of developing green technologies.
“The roll out of the new double-decker buses will help to cement Aberdeen’s position as an entrepreneurial and technological leader as the new buses come with even more advanced technology which pushes established hydrogen boundaries and greatly assists us in tackling air pollution in the city.
“We look forward to seeing the new hydrogen double-deckers being tested around the streets of Aberdeen over the next few weeks before they come into service.”
Aberdeen City Council Co-Leader Councillor Douglas Lumsden said: “It is fantastic to see the world’s first hydrogen-powered double-decker bus arrive in Aberdeen and they further show our commitment to achieving net zero. By leveraging our unique assets and capabilities, we will help lead the world on the rapid shift to a net zero future and support the global energy transition as a climate positive city.
Jo Bamford, Wrightbus owner and Executive Chairman, said: “We’re immensely proud to be putting the world’s first fleet of hydrogen double-deckers onto the streets of Aberdeen. And these buses represent much more than Aberdeen striving to reach a clean air, zero-carbon future. They represent the start of what could be a world-leading hydrogen economy here in Scotland which will bring with it multi-million pound investments and tens of thousands of jobs.”
David Phillips, Operations Director for First Aberdeen, added: “We look forward to rolling the new buses out to the people of Aberdeen later this month and it is exciting to play a part in the latest leg of the city’s hydrogen journey. First Aberdeen are committed to working with local stakeholders to accelerate our driver for a zero emission fleet across our entire network by 2035 and we are excited to see the impact these buses will have.”
The vehicles are part funded by the European Union’s JIVE project, which aims to aid commercialisation of hydrogen buses through joint procurement between cities. Cities that will follow Aberdeen’s footsteps include London and Birmingham, with Dundee and Brighton and Hove being lead partners in JIVE2.
The new £8.3m project has been funded by Aberdeen City Council, the Scottish Government, and the European Union (FCH JU), with an investment of about £500,000 per vehicle.
Scotland’s Energy Minister, Paul Wheelhouse, said: “I warmly welcome the deployment of the very latest generation of zero emission hydrogen buses in the city – building on Aberdeen’s already-impressive record of achievements as a pioneer in the use of hydrogen transport solutions. Our funding contribution of £3m towards this new fleet is evidence of our commitment to decarbonising transport, as a key element of Scotland’s journey to net-zero carbon, with potential economic benefits for the North East and right across the remainder of Scotland.”