Hybrid buses on Oxford Street

MQT on 2014-07-23
Session date: 
July 23, 2014
Question By: 
Darren Johnson
City Hall Greens
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Given the dangerous concentrations of Nitrogen Dioxide in Oxford Street and other central London locations, will you ensure that hybrid buses automatically switch to electric vehicle operation inside the congestion charge area?


Answer for Hybrid buses on Oxford Street

Answer for Hybrid buses on Oxford Street

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The most effective available steps to reduce nitrogen dioxide in Oxford Street are already making a marked improvement to air quality with overall nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions falling a third in the past two years. 


TfL has achieved this through a series of improvements including:-


* retrofitting older Euro 3 generation buses such as those on route 159, which serve Oxford Street, with selective catalytic reduction equipment which reduces NOx by up to 88 per cent


* reducing the busiest bus flows on Oxford Street, particularly its western section, by 20 per cent in recent years.


* Deploying the New Routemaster - which emits half the NOx of a comparable hybrid double deck - to routes 390, 148, 10 and 8 which pass through Oxford Street, Oxford Circus or Marble Arch.


* Increasing the proportion of hybrid buses in Oxford Street at rush hour to around 50 per cent and raising this further to around 65 per cent by summer 2015.


Additional measures will be undertaken to reduce nitrogen dioxide further in areas with high road-side emissions such as:-


* introducing new buses with the ultra-low emission Euro VI engine which cuts NOx by up to 95 per cent.


* Diesel-electric hybrid buses have the potential to harness automatic engine switch-off technology and operate in pure-electric mode. TfL is investigating how it might make use of this feature in future.