Ecological buses arrive in Lincoln

Photo (L-R): Engineering Director at Stagecoach, John Taylor. Anita Ruffle, Public Transport Strategy and Development Manager at County Council, Tanya Vaughan, Publicity Officer LCC and Standards Engineer at Stagecoach Ian McDonald.

The UK’s first bio-methane gas-fueled bus, set to operate in Lincoln, was unveiled on Thursday at the Epic Centre at the Lincolnshire Showground.

The bus is the first of 11 busses running on a mixture of conventional diesel and bio-methane gas, which will be in service mainly around the Cathedral Quarter of Lincoln by the end of April.

Engineering Director at Stagecoach, John Taylor, explained how the engine runs firstly off diesel fuel but upon accelerating, gas stored in the tank on the roof is introduced using less diesel.

Taylor said: “The bus is no different to drive, is less noisy, doesn’t smell even though it is methane gas, but does reduce our carbon footprint by hopefully up to 50%.”

The new busses are being run by Stagecoach to test a new County Council initiative, supported by funding from the East Midlands Development Agency.

Public Transport Strategy and Development Manager at Lincolnshire County Council, Anita Ruffle, described her experience of riding the new bus.

Ruffle said: “The last time I rode the bus was last week around the Ermine and I couldn’t tell any difference today.

“This is designed as a trial for around 12 months which, with the help of Stagecoach, will demonstrate the technology works and we will see a growth in interest from commercial operators.

“The 11 new buses are a county council initiative, supported by funding from the East Midlands Development Agency.

“Stagecoach will be operating the vehicles and running a trial on our behalf for the next six to 12 months, just to prove that this technology really does work.”