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article imageShenzhen, China — World's first city with all-electric bus fleet

By Karen Graham     Jan 4, 2018 in Technology
Shenzhen - On December 27, 2017, the Shenzhen, China municipal transport commission announced it had completed the transition of its bus fleet to 100 percent electric buses.
With its 16,359 e-buses, Shenzhen is the first major city in the world to have an all-electric bus fleet. How many buses does this represent? Imagine the bus fleets of New York City, Los Angeles County, New Jersey Transit, suburban Chicago and Toronto, and it still wouldn't be as many e-buses as there are in Shenzhen.
Not only does the city have a massive number of e-buses, but their electric taxi fleet is substantial as well. With 12,518 electric taxis, this is only 62.5 percent of that overall fleet. So making its taxi fleet all-electric is the next goal for the city chosen as a pilot for the program, electric transit in 2009. Shenzhen was one of 13 cities to pilot a national new-energy vehicle program.
“We will gradually replace the existing fuel-powered cabs with electricity-powered ones and complete the target by 2020, or even ahead of schedule,” said Zheng Jingyu, head of the public transport department of the city’s public transport administration bureau, according to Green Car Reports.
Massive change in infrastructure was needed
Changing over to an all-electric municipal transportation system is quite an investment, and this move required the appropriate infrastructure to be built. Shenzhen has 510 bus charging stations with a combined 8,000 charging points, so it can charge just under half the fleet at once.
The charging station at the Qinghu Bus Terminal has more than 30 charging poles. The assistant manager for the terminal, Guan Anguang, told CleanTechnica, “A bus can be fully charged within two hours and the charging poles can serve 300 buses a day. Since the replacement, the [Quinhu Bus Terminal] has become quiet, even as the e-buses are entering and exiting the terminal," he said.
Interior of a BYD electric bus cockpit.
Interior of a BYD electric bus cockpit.
Environmental benefits and the future
It is being reported that electric buses can save 72.9 percent more energy than the current diesel buses, which means that the Shenzhen bus fleet will save an estimated 345,000 tons of fuel per year and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1.35 million tons per year.
The e-taxis will save the energy equivalent of 119,000 tons of standard coal, replacing 116,000 tons of fuel. This story is just one part of the clear path the Chinese government has provided in encouraging the transition to a cleaner transportation future. And China's electric bus market is huge.
It should be noted that China's efforts to reduce air pollution has resulted in 115,700 electric buses being sold in China by 2016. The economic advantages are obvious to fleet operators, too. The cost of electric buses is offset within a few years by the savings in lower maintenance (fewer moving parts, no internal combustion engine) and lower fuel costs.
BYD US Headquarters in Los Angeles  Caligornia in 2015.
BYD US Headquarters in Los Angeles, Caligornia in 2015.
About BYD Company Ltd
BYD Co. is a Chinese manufacturer of automobiles, buses, forklifts, rechargeable batteries, and trucks with its corporate headquarters in Shenzhen. It has two major subsidiaries, BYD Automobile and BYD Electronic.BYD was founded in 1995 and began as a rechargeable-battery factory competing in the Chinese market against Japanese imports.
A year after the 2002 acquisition of Tsinchuan Automobile Co Ltd, BYD Automobile Co Ltd was born. While one of many Chinese automakers, by 2010 it was the sixth largest in terms of sales volume. And it has continued to grow. The company now has offices in downtown Los Angeles, California and sales offices in a number of countries.
BYD has been recognized for their contributions to innovative technologies that allow mobile phone batteries to be made at room temperature rather than expensive, heated dry rooms.
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