Surge of Support for Electrifying Vic Buses: Research

Transitioning Victoria and Australia’s bus fleets to zero emissions by 2030 must be a central component of any credible transport decarbonisation strategy, according to a new research report from the Australia Institute.

The report, Next Stop: Zero Emissions Buses by 2030’, has been launched with new polling revealing the overwhelming majority of Victorians (71%) support matching the NSW Government’s policy of electrifying its bus fleet by 2030. The polling also found overwhelming support for manufacturing electric buses in Australia, with strongest support among Coalition voters.

Key Findings:

  • NSW currently has the most comprehensive bus electrification policies.
    • The NSW Government has committed to a 100% zero emissions fleet by 2030 and has a dedicated Zero Emissions Bus Transition Strategy.
  • Victoria has committed to 100% electric bus purchases from 2025.
    • New polling conducted by the Australia Institute finds that seven in ten Victorians (71%) support the Victorian Government matching the New South Wales Government’s target of a 100% zero emissions bus fleet by 2030.
  • Queensland has committed to 100% of Translink-funded bus purchases being electric from 2025 in South-East Queensland and from 2025-2030 across regional Queensland.
  • The ACT has committed to a 100% zero emissions fleet target by 2040.
  • The Northern Territory, Tasmania, Western Australia, and South Australia do not have any bus electrification targets.

“Switching to electric buses ticks all the boxes – job creation, manufacturing, public transport, and of course, climate action,” said Audrey Quicke, climate & energy researcher and transport lead at the Australia Institute.

“Our research and polling show strong community support for Victoria matching the NSW policy of switching to 100% electric buses by 2030.

“Progress towards electrification is mixed across the country, with states like NSW running ahead of time and Victoria close behind. Other states and the Federal Government have missed the bus completely.

“The full electrification of bus fleets is a widely popular policy option amongst Australians. The Climate of the Nation 2021 report shows that three in four Australians support fully electrifying state bus fleets by 2030.

“State and territory governments are leading Australia’s electric bus transition. If the Federal Government was serious about decarbonising the transportation sector, it would increase financial support for electric bus procurement.”

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