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Grants will help to retrofit Scottish buses

20 Scottish coach and bus operators have been awarded a share of £6.2m in grants to help them to retrofit their vehicles. 

The fourth round of the Bus Emission Abatement Retrofit Fund (BEAR) will see 379 older buses and coaches adapted to achieve the Euro VI emission standards required for Low Emission Zones across Scotland. 

This will bring the total number of mid-life buses and coaches to be upgraded thanks to the BEAR scheme to over 1,000. 

Minister for Transport Graeme Dey said: ‘I’m delighted to announce this funding for bus operators in and around Glasgow to retrofit mid-life buses – adding to the £12.4m we have invested through the BEAR programme in the previous three rounds.

‘We know buses will have a key role to play in our world-leading ambition to reduce car kilometres by 20% by 2030, as well as helping to support the delivery of Scotland’s Low Emission Zones. We all want our air quality to be the best in Europe, but for the oldest and youngest in our society and those with existing health conditions it remains an issue. These bus and coach retrofit systems will reduce emissions of harmful pollution to improve local air quality and benefit public health as we introduce LEZs in Glasgow and our other three biggest cities next year.’

red and white tram on road during daytime

Cllr Anna Richardson, Convener for Sustainability and Carbon Reduction added: ‘The continued uptake of BEAR funding is excellent news and I’m heartened that the city’s bus operators continue to back cleaner air, with their ongoing work to make fleet changes that ensure more and more of their vehicles meet the cleaner emission standards required by Glasgow’s Low Emission Zone.

‘The phasing in of Glasgow’s LEZ is making good progress and we remain committed to encouraging a shift towards alternative travel options such as bus – positioning this mode of transport in the long term as a viable and sustainable alternative to the car. Ensuring Glasgow is served well by a high-quality bus service will help us deliver on our commitment to improve air quality to protect public health and ensure the city centre is a vibrant place to live, work and visit.’

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