There is an emissions emergency in Scotland’s largest cities. Poor air quality is having an impact on the health of our people and our planet, affecting everyone.

In Dundee, in preparation for the introduction of a Low Emission Zone in 2020, Xplore Dundee takes its role in recognising and reducing this problem very seriously and is fully on board with the low emissions agenda – actively embracing clean technology in its fleet.

Xplore Dundee has already invested £4 million in cleaner, greener vehicles this year, with several more on the way before the end of 2019. Managing Director Christine McGlasson said: “We have dubbed our new smart hybrid double deckers ‘Emerald’ and their Euro VI engines are so clean they reduce emissions by 95% and are better for the environment than even a single car.

HeraldScotland: Christine McGlasson, Managing Director at Xplore Dundee (National Express)Christine McGlasson, Managing Director at Xplore Dundee (National Express)

“We’re getting ready for Dundee’s Low Emission Zone strategy and working alongside the city council to prepare for this. Providing great value travel right across Dundee on comfortable, modern and clean vehicles makes taking the bus a really attractive option in the face of the air quality crisis which affects all of us.”

Following on from the smart hybrids, Xplore Dundee’s fleet has also benefited from the retro-fitting of seven vehicles from Euro III emissions standards to upgrade them to Euro VI levels.

These buses were part of the Scottish Government’s Abatement Retrofitting (BEAR) programme; an application for BEAR 2 funding was also successful and will provide upgrading for another 10 vehicles. Working in partnership with Dundee City Council, the bus operator is discussing various technologies including hydrogen and electric vehicles. Xplore Dundee has outlined its agenda on air quality and emissions in the report ‘Solution to Pollution – our low emission’, which is available at xploredundee.com.

HeraldScotland: The YouTube series Fully Charged visited Dundee at the V & A, presented by Robert Llewellyn The YouTube series Fully Charged visited Dundee at the V & A, presented by Robert Llewellyn

Christine added: “We will never fix the air quality crisis if we don’t also tackle the congestion crisis.

Each year, along with the rest of the bus industry, we see traffic speeds falling and journey times increasing because there are more and more vehicles on the roads.

“We’re calling on politicians and the public to take action – that means bus operators, local authorities and other agencies working closer than ever together to take meaningful steps to bold solutions. A single low emission double decker bus can take up to 75 cars off our streets, which means faster travel and cleaner air.

“We want the best possible future for Scotland, our city and its people. Buses are not part of the problem – they are the solution to pollution.”

HeraldScotland:

The Herald’s Climate for Change initiative supports efforts being made by the Scottish Government with key organisations and campaign partners. Throughout the year we will provide a forum in The Herald newspaper, online at herald.scotland.com and in Business HQ magazine, covering news and significant developments in this increasingly crucial area.

If you are interested in contributing editorially or interested in becoming a Climate for Change partner, please contact Stephen McTaggart on 0141 302 6137 or email stephen.mctaggart@heraldandtimes.co.uk