Forum: Electric buses a step in the right direction

According to the national communication and biennial update report Singapore submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 2018, about 14 per cent of Singapore's total emissions came from the transport sector.

I commend the Land Transport Authority's (LTA) move to reduce that number even further by deploying the first 10 fully electric double-decker buses in Singapore (First 10 electric double-decker buses hit the roads in S'pore, Oct 28).

They join 15 electric single-decker buses that have already been deployed as well as the 50 hybrid buses on the roads, and emphasise LTA's goal to have buses run on cleaner energy by 2040.

Even though fossil fuels are burnt to generate the electricity needed to power these buses, there still is a reduction in carbon emissions as compared with their diesel counterparts. The move to use electricity instead of diesel is a step in the right direction towards combating climate change.

However, there are a few points that I would like clarified about this scheme.

First, the new buses cost up to twice that of conventional diesel buses. What are the plans to recoup this money?

Second, these electric buses can carry 10 per cent fewer passengers than diesel buses. Would bus frequency be adjusted to offset this, especially during peak periods.

Overall, given that the electric buses have the potential to tap cleaner renewable energy in the future, this gives electric buses the potential to further develop and become more green.

Claire Marie Ho

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