London’s Iconic Double Decker Bus Goes Green
We’re all familiar with London’s iconic Double Decker buses, which have been a part of the British transportation system and pop culture for the better part of the last 50 years. And now those iconic buses are going from red to green, turning to hybrid diesel-electric engines.
As part of the Mayor of London’s plan for an increased reliance on energy efficient vehicles to power the city’s transport infrastructure, Transport for London, the British agency responsible for public transportation, has introduced one hybrid bus across route 141. The current hybrid bus is powered by a hybrid diesel-electric engine. Thanks to the mixture of both systems, the bus is able to cover the same distance range as a conventional diesel bus. All the hybrid buses will be marked with a leafy insignia to better communicate to the passengers that they are indeed traveling on an environmentally friendly bus. Here’s hoping that the rest of London, and other cities in the world follow this lead.
“This is a world-first for London marking our commitment to a cleaner, greener public transport network.” said Mayor Ken Livigstone.
Rickshaws, or cycle rickshaws, are a popular mode of human-powered transportation all around the world. The higher tech electric version of the foot-pedalled rickshaws has been gaining popularity recently, as it is an important sustainable mode of transport across developing nations. Now, London-based research and design company Solar Lab is working on a solar-powered rickshaw that will be the first human powered hybrid vehicle - combining pedal power with energy from rooftop photovoltaics.
The solar rickshaw would significantly reduce pollution and CO2 emissions in London. SolarLab estimates that each vehicle could reduce CO2 emissions by up to 2 tons. And, the design of the rickshaw is modular so it can be easily converted into a load-bearing vehicle if necessary.
SolarLab’s rickshaw will be launched next year in. Based on its performance in London, the vehicle could soon be made available in other cities around the world.