First biomethane-powered buses being tested in Estonia’s capital city
The first two biomethane-powered city buses arrived in Tallinn, which, upon the successful completion of a test period, will begin serving public transport routes in the Estonian capital. Another approximately dozen buses of the 100 planned to enter service before the end of the year are expected to arrive by the end of July.
Tallinna Linnatranspordi AS (TLT) board member Otto Popel said that the entry of the new biomethane-powered buses into service marks the biggest environmentally-friendly upgrade to public transport in Tallinn in recent years.
“The first two biomethane-powered buses — an articulated bus and a normal bus — will first be conducting test drives in the capital city so that we can assess their compliance with our order and assess their technical readiness for daily route service,” Popel explained, adding that if the new vehicles meet all requirements and procurement contract criteria, they will remain in Tallinn upon the conclusion of the test period already.
According to the board member, at least a dozen new environmentally-friendly natural gas-powered buses are to arrive in the capital in the next weeks, and by November the city will replace 100 of its oldest vehicles with new CNG buses.
Popel added that in the next few years, only the otherwise newest, Euro 6 emission standard-compliant buses will remain in use alongside the new buses. He also stressed that the greatest benefit of the new public transport vehicles is their environmental friendliness, but also the fact that a younger fleet will also mean savings on renovations and maintenance of old and worn out infrastructure.
The new biomethane-powered buses were manufactured by Polish company Solaris Bus & Coach, which submitted the winning, €26.96 million bid to a public procurement, reported ERR (English-language online portal of Estonian Public Broadcasting).