York City Council has awarded more than £1.6 million of funding to five bus companies to retrofit their vehicles and make them more environmentally friendly.
A total of 93 buses will be retrofitted or replaced by Arriva Yorkshire, First York, Harrogate Coach Travel, Reliance Motor Services and Transdev, with the vehicles required to operate on routes serving the Clean Air Zone (CAZ) in the city for a minimum of five years.
The CAZ is being launched on 31st January, with every bus operating frequent services on or within York’s inner ring road required to meet the Euro VI emissions standard.
The only buses that will be exempt from the requirements are those than enter the CAZ less than five times a day and those due to be retrofitted or replaced within the next 12 months.
Councillor Andy D’Agorne, Executive Member for Transport, said: “These grant allocations mean that, as the year progresses, bus emissions will gradually decrease as new and retrofitted buses come into service.
“By February 2021, all but a very small number of infrequent bus services will meet the Euro VI emission standard. This represents a major step forwards in our drive to improve air quality in the city centre by tackling the causes of pollution and will benefit the health and wellbeing of everyone who lives and works in York, as well as visitors to the city.
“Of course, the buses operating in the Clean Air Zone will also operate throughout the city so by declaring a city centre CAZ, we will be improving air quality across York.”