Mayors of major world cities including London, Paris, Los Angeles, Barcelona and Mexico City have today (23 October) signed a commitment to procure only zero-emission buses from 2025.
The pledge is one of a series of commitments outlined in the C40 Fossil-Fuel-Free Streets Declaration, signed by the leaders of 12 cities at the Together4Climate conference in Paris this afternoon.
Other cities to have signed up to the commitment include Copenhagen, Quito, Vancouver, Milan, Seattle, Auckland and Cape Town.
Key among the pledges is a commitment to ensure that a major area of their city is zero emission by 2030.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has already outlined plans to create central London and town centre zero emission zones from 2025, and creating a zero emission zone in inner London by 2040 and a London-wide zone by 2050 (see airqualitynews.com story).
The city has also targeted the use of zero-emission capable buses across the city’s fleet by 2037.
Other policies within the commitment include a pledge to increase rates of walking, cycling and the use of public and shared transport, reduce the number of polluting vehicles on city streets and collaborate with suppliers, fleet operators and businesses to accelerate the shift to zero-emission vehicles and reduce vehicle miles in cities.
Commenting on the pledge, Anne Hidalgo, the Mayor of Paris, said: “Air pollution caused by petrol and diesel vehicles is killing millions of people in cities around the world. The same emissions are also causing climate change.
“In Paris we are taking bold action to prioritise the streets for pedestrians and cyclists. Working with citizens, businesses and mayors of these great cities we will create green and healthy streets for future generations to enjoy.â€?
Commenting on measures being implemented in London to address air pollution, including the T-Charge, introduced today (see airqualitynews.com story) Mr Khan said: “This is just the first step – we are introducing further world-leading restrictions on polluting vehicles over the next few years, as well as cleaning up our bus fleet and keeping our pledge not to buy a single new double decker diesel bus.
“We are also building brand new cycle lanes right across the city and focusing on reducing pollution around schools. I want to make London one of the greenest cities in the world – that’s why I’m putting walking, cycling and zero emission public transport right at the heart of Londoners’ day-to-day lives alongside energy efficient buildings, clean energy and increased recycling.â€?