The updated Transit Vehicle Emissions Reduction Strategy outlines short-, medium- and long-term measures that will be applied over the next 20 years to improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
"Ottawa has a reputation as a leader both in transit and sustainability," said Mayor Larry O'Brien. "We have long been at the forefront of adopting transit technologies and practices that make OC Transpo a safe, responsible, economical and environmentally friendly choice for commuters. And as we move forward with our rapid-transit plan, the implementation of electric light rail will make for an even greener city."
The strategy outlines a number of measures the City will take over the next four years, such as:
- Examining the cost of bio-diesel as an alternative fuel
- Providing annual greenhouse gas emission reports for buses and trains
- Completing the implementation plan for 177 diesel-electric hybrid buses, which will be used on low-speed transit routes with frequent stops
- Converting the fleet to more environmentally friendly No.2 diesel fuel
- Preparing to use urea as an exhaust after-treatment agent in buses with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 2010 certified engines
- Completing a study on tire pressure monitoring and tracking
- Finalizing the testing and evaluation of its three double-decker buses.
"Taking the bus has always been the environmentally responsible choice," said Transit Committee Chair Alex Cullen. "In the past five years, we have reduced bus emissions of hydrocarbons and nitric oxides by 67 per cent and particulates by 98 per cent. The strategies we implement over the coming years will reduce those numbers even further as we work towards our ultimate goal of near-zero emissions."
Over the next five to 10 years, the City's Transit Vehicle Emissions Reduction Strategy includes expanding the City's rapid-transit network with near-zero emissions rail vehicles, as well as continuing to monitor developments and advances in fuel-cell technology and alternate vehicle power sources. In the longer term, over the next 11 to 20 years, the City will be focused on converting the bus fleet to near-zero emission technology.