“We chose this bus specifically because of its range. The range of this bus gets us about 350 kilometres, which means it can do almost every piece of work that we have in our system,” says Robar.
It only takes three hours to fully charge an empty bus battery. With buses coming back with 65 to 70 percent of battery capacity remaining, however, Robar says it’s only taking an average of an hour a day to charge each bus.
Electrification is a cornerstone of Edmonton’s municipal Energy Transition Strategy, which seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stay within the 1.5°C carbon budget sought by the Paris Climate Accord.
But for Robar, it’s also about “keeping our costs low”—and reducing operating costs is one of the most important things in municipal budgeting.
Like all things electric, the upfront costs tend to be higher. In the long run, though, Robar says “this offers us a 30 percent reduction in costs for maintaining the bus … And on top of that, anywhere from 50 to 75 percent savings in our fuel.”