Aruba deploys first BYD electric bus
14 October 2013
Aruba’s Arubus has put into service a BYD 12-meter (40-foot) electric bus—the first such in the Caribbean. The bus delivery for revenue service is only the first step of a memo-of-understanding signed in June, 2013 between BYD and Aruba outlining Aruba’s plans to be the first nation with a carbon-neutral footprint and complete energy independence, with only clean sustainable renewable power sources and electrified public transportation.
The first of four major objectives in the MOU was electrifying public transportation with zero-emissions vehicles.
The Aruba government is initially leasing the electric bus until March 2014 to evaluate the service characteristics before an additional 3-4 vehicles are ordered for the next phase of implementation.
This bus will cost Arubus 60% less than fuel driven buses in service at the moment, saving Arubus over 1.2 million florins (~US$600,000) per bus over a lifetime of greater than 12 years. This bus will be in service for about 5 months and the bus will be rigorously tested and researched by an independent research organization to establish the efficiency of the bus. The vision of the ministry together with Arubus and WEB is to have 4 more buses on Aruba by 2014, followed by 16 more buses to have a total of 20 buses in service before 2020. Four years ago the ministry of Mike Eman had a vision in which Aruba could and would be fossil fuel independent to generate electricity and to have a fully electrified public transportation including the independent taxis. With this bus we are showing our commitment and realizing our vision.—Transportation Minister Otmar Oduber
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