It was an absolute pleasure meeting up with so many people from the bus industry at the Zemo conference in Glasgow. A warm hand is always better than a cold phone or Teams meeting.
The event was short but sweet with Zemo’s Dan Hayes leading off by giving an overview of current market and government efforts spearheaded by his team. He then introduced a series of speakers, starting with Ralph Roberts, CEO of McGills Bus Company. Ralph analysed the thought process for himself and the McGills team to initiate their EV program and how proud they were to be leading the bus transport space in Scotland for EVs. He also highlighted the positive reaction to clean bus transport from his passengers. McGills now has the largest EV fleet in Scotland!
Ralph was followed by Ian Downie, with Yutong from China. Ian illustrated the incredible benefits of electric bus services and the massive production facility Yutong operates in China. Very impressive!
Last, but certainly not least, was Arron Dowie and Richard Kapelko from Zenobe. Arron discussed the market changing approach Zenobe brings regarding electrification of mass transport, starting with buses. Their holistic approach from energy infrastructure and charging through to battery financing and services is game changing. Zenobe enables cash strapped fleet operators to make the transition to fully electric and fund the capital costs out of budgeted opex per km and realised operational savings… Richard focussed on the execution with all parties at ground level giving insight into the process and collaborative efforts that made McGills electric bus depot come to life.
After the speeches, a Q&A session was held that was informative and constructive. Except of course when Ralph shot down my question about his view of re-powering! LOL. Thankfully, Arron stepped in to highlight the strong consensus from the fleet operators he speaks with and how re-powering diesel buses with electric drivetrains will play a vital role in eliminating dirty fossil fuels in favour of clean electric drives.
Looking forward to working together with everyone on the herculean task of stopping toxic emissions from polluting our neighbourhoods and destroying our atmosphere…
Joe Tighe, CEO, Kleanbus