Monday, June 24, 2024

ACT announces infrastructure support for future electric bus fleet

The ACT Government has engaged Evo Energy to undertake critical electrical infrastructure works to supply two Territory bus depots with the energy required to house and charge up to 300 battery electric buses.

Chief Minister, Andrew Barr said the announcement is part of the ACT’s transition to a cleaner, more sustainable future, by building the infrastructure Canberra needs to power a zero emissions public transport fleet.

“The Government is making sure that the ACT continues to lead on the transition to a low emissions future. This investment is part of our plan to electrify public transport, reduce emissions and lower the ongoing operating costs of the bus fleet,” said Mr Barr.

“Importantly, we have made this investment through the budget so that the impacts of transitioning to a zero-emission public transport network are not passed onto Canberrans through their household electricity bills.

“The Government is investing in our city and in infrastructure that is built for Canberra, to ensure that our city continues to be one of the most liveable in the world.”

He said further work continues to be undertaken in consultation with Evoenergy to deliver essential infrastructure upgrades to the distribution network to support the ACT in transitioning to a zero-emission public transport system by 2040.

With the first of Canberra’s 12 electric buses now on the road, the announcement locks in the supporting electrical infrastructure required to operate the future 90 electric buses currently under procurement.

The Government is also progressing internal electric works at Tuggeranong and Belconnen Bus Depots to increase electrical capacity to enable more flexible charging arrangements in the short term.

The installation of these high voltage cables, which will span 11.9 kilometres will be ready to support the new Woden Bus Depot with capacity to charge up to 100 buses and upgrade Tuggeranong depot to charge up to 200 buses.

This work involves augmentation of Evoenergy’s electrical distribution network by connecting two bus depots, via two new 11 kV dedicated underground feeders from Evoenergy’s Wanniassa Zone substation, to help manage maximum demand of up to 12.2MVA at Tuggeranong and 5.1MVA at Woden.

“This is a significant day for public transport in Canberra as we transition to zero-emission transport. Our transition plan has never just been about buying electric buses, it is about building the grid and charging infrastructure to support them and upskilling our staff to maintain and operate this new technology,” said Minister for Transport and City Services, Chris Steel.

“This investment means we can progressively be rolling out new bus technology across our city over the coming years to grow our zero-emission fleet. These buses will integrate with our expanded mass-transit light rail network, with both transport modes running on 100% renewable electricity.

“Our combined investments represent the biggest improvement to Canberra’s public transport system in a generation. This will give every Canberran the opportunity to play their part in taking real action on climate change and provide more comfortable and convenient ways to get around our city,” the Minister said.

$26.3 million over three financial years will be invested to complete the electrical infrastructure works.

For more information on the Zero-Emissions Transition Plan for Transport Canberra visit Zero-Emission Transition Plan For Transport Canberra – Transport Canberra (act.gov.au).

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