Clean Vehicles and Fuels
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Entire bus and taxi fleets in some Trendsetter cities are now running on renewable fuel. Also, the sale of clean cars increases rapidly and fuel distribution has improved. Trendsetter has inspired municipalities, car manufacturers, companies and citizens to join the development towards a clean vehicle society.
Cars, buses and trucks will always be needed, but they need to be operating on fuels that do not emit greenhouse gases or other pollutants. Big changes are necessary if we want to achieve this. There must be new fuel production and distribution, new or adjusted vehicles and a maintenance chain.
Graz, Lille and Stockholm have worked in different ways to introduce and promote both heavy-duty and light clean vehicles as well as new fuelling infrastructure for biofuels.
Within Trendsetter, biogas buses have been introduced in Lille and Stockholm. The results are lower noise levels, healthier air and much lower emissions of CO2. Drivers in Stockholm are very satisfied and recommend others to drive heavy biogas vehicles. Both cities produce biogas locally from their waste and sewage treatment plants. Lille has also proved that a bus fleet operating on biogas does not have to cost more than operating diesel buses.
In Graz, the whole public bus fleet has switched to biodiesel operation, saving tonnes of fossil CO2 and particles each year. In the Old Town of Stockholm, waste collection lorries with biogas fuel have been a success – better air and lower noise levels are appreciated by both the drivers and the citizens.
Municipalities, taxi companies and other private companies can be encouraged to transform their fleets into clean fleets. This increases the demand for clean cars, which spurs the car manufacturers and fuelling companies to provide more clean cars and a better biofuel infrastructure.
Lille and Stockholm have introduced clean passenger cars into their city fleets. Energy consumption and emissions are down and the drivers are satisfied. The disadvantage has been a somewhat higher maintenance cost. However, Stockholm has managed to reduce the price of the vehicles by buying large quantities, gathering many buyers from all over Sweden in joint procurements. Lille, on the other hand, has not been able to replace as many cars as planned during Trendsetter due to lack of sellers. In Graz, the largest taxi fleet has switched to biodiesel cars. The taxi filling station is available also for the public.
Stockholm has tried a variety of ways to raise the interest for clean vehicles. Subsidies for companies, sales promotion activities, free testing of clean cars, education for vehicle retailers and contacts with journalists are some of the activities. Also, a detailed national website for potential buyers of clean vehicles has been launched. Altogether, these measures have rapidly increased the interest among both companies and citizens for clean cars and sales figures are up.
New kinds of fuel can mean new and innovative ways to produce and distribute them. In Graz, biodiesel is made out of used cooking oil from restaurants and private households. The collection system has been improved during Trendsetter. Both the amount of collected oil and the knowledge about the collecting system has increased.
Lille builds a new big waste plant for production of biogas fuel. The plant will use organic waste from the city and the neighbouring area. The fuel is linked through a short pipeline to a bus depot nearby.
In Stockholm, four new biogas fuel stations have been built within Trendsetter. This has improved the fuelling infrastructure for drivers of biogas cars and given private companies a chance to choose biogas in their fleet.
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Thematic co-ordination - Clean Vehicles and Fuels: