City Motors and Chinese international School announce trial of low-carbon biodiesel in two school buses.
TASS was excited to take part in the maiden biodiesel refuelling ceremony of a City Motors school bus at Shell Kowloon Bay yesterday (February 27th, 2023). The ceremony marked the commencement of a 3-month long biodiesel trial City Motors is running on two buses serving Chinese International School (CIS).
City Motors operates a fleet of 85 school buses in Hong Kong serving 15 schools including CIS and Carmel School. TASS first approached City Motors in September last year to discuss using low-carbon biodiesel in their school buses. Fast forward to five months later, and thanks to the combined efforts of the CIS admin team, the school’s student-led environmental group, CIS’s TASS Student Ambassadors and City Motors – the bus company agreed to trial biodiesel in two of its routes for CIS!
Transport is responsible for nearly 20% of Hong Kong’s greenhouse gas emissions. The Hong Kong Government’s strategy to decarbonize the economy by 2050 envisages widespread use of electric vehicles (EVs). However, the transition to EVs will take several decades because it requires significant investment in new buses, charging infrastructure and low carbon sources of electricity. Biodiesel can make a significant contribution to reducing carbon emissions during the transition – it can be used immediately at scale without requirements for new infrastructure.
Pure biodiesel made from waste (B100) reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 85% compared to fossil diesel. It is manufactured in Hong Kong by three local companies which have the capacity to produce more than 100 million liters of biodiesel per year. This represents about 10% of the fossil diesel consumed annually in the road transport sector in Hong Kong. Biodiesel could therefore cut carbon emissions from road transport by 8.5 percent immediately. No other transport fuel or technology available today can achieve such a significant reduction in carbon emissions on such a short time scale.
Edward Tong, City Motors’ Director of Operations said City Motors is planning to test B5 biodiesel supplied by Shell in two school buses with Euro V and Euro VI engines that operate on routes with different drive cycles.
Anthony Dixon, TASS’ Founder said “This is an example of the change that can happen when schools and school students hold their bus companies accountable for sustainability. City Motors is to be congratulated on stepping up and responding to the call. I am sure using biodiesel will give them a competitive edge in the market”.
TASS has been working with student environment leaders and its student ambassadors to lobby school bus companies to reduce the carbon footprint of their school bus service. Biodiesel is one way for bus companies to do that and City Motors is the most recent school bus company to agree to a trial. Pak Po (Victoria Shanghai Academy) and Jolly Bus (The Harbour School) announced similar trials this month.
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