Saturday, April 20, 2024

Govt on board with electric bus fleet deal

A $50 million investment by Government-owned New Zealand Green Investment Finance towards electrifying the nation’s public bus fleet has been welcomed by Climate Change Minister, James Shaw.

NZGIF today announced it had signed the major financing deal with Kinetic – Australasia’s largest bus transport operator – to help decarbonise public transport in New Zealand.

NZGIF’s capex facility will finance electric buses and associated infrastructure.

“Today’s announcement that NZGIF has signed a $50 million financing deal with Kinetic, the biggest bus operator in Australasia, to further decarbonise public transport is good news,” Mr Shaw said.

New Zealand Green Investment Finance says the money it is making available should fund more than 150 zero-emissions buses and associated infrastructure.

“If New Zealand is going to meet its CO2 emissions reductions targets, we’re going to need to dramatically increase the number of low and zero-carbon emissions buses on our roads,” said NZGIF Chief Executive, Craig Weise.

“Only around 5% of public buses in New Zealand are electric at the moment, so there’s room for a huge improvement. The technology is readily available but, until now, financing for the New Zealand market just hasn’t been there.

“We were established precisely to help catalyse these sorts of deals, and to collaborate with other like-minded organisations to build a low carbon economy.

“It’s great to be working with Kinetic, which is not only the largest bus operator in Australasia but one of the fastest growing as well. They’re already well established in New Zealand through their acquisitions of NZ Bus and Go Bus, and we’re excited to be working with them and the broader lending syndicate to help reduce public transport emissions.”

Minister Shaw said the switch to electric buses would also help save lives by cutting air pollution.

“Every year in New Zealand, 2200 adults die prematurely and 13,200 children suffer from asthma because of air pollution caused by diesel burnt in cars, trucks and buses,” he said.

“There is no downside to investing in efficient, clean public transport, and I am pleased to see NZGIF doing the job we set it up to do.”

New Zealand Green Investment Finance was established by the Government in 2019 as part of the Green Party’s Confidence and Supply Agreement with the Labour Party.

Latest Articles