Why and how Chinese cities are electrifying their buses and taxis

In just eight years, Shenzhen became the first city to electrify 100 percent of its public buses—16,359, to be exact.

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Businesses and governments all over the world are searching for technological innovations that reduce costs and increase usage of “environmentally friendly” vehicles.

Central and local governments in China are investing heavily in the development of Electric Vehicles.

These investments have made China the largest car producer in 2009 and it is strongly investing in the manufacturing of electric vehicles.

The investments provide subsidies to public transport companies which is fueling the rapid growth of electric vehicle adoption and pushing record sales.

For example, the Chinese city of Shenzhen—home to the largest fleet of electric buses—is the first in the world to electrify 100 percent of its buses, and now it wants to do the same with its taxi fleet.

In Shenzhen, 65 percent of taxis are currently electric but the city plans to electrify 100 percent by 2020.

The city has built 510 bus charging stations and 8,000 charging poles.

“A bus can be fully charged within two hours and the charging poles can serve 300 buses a day,” said Guan Anguang, assistant manager at Qinghu Bus Terminal.

This has made China the world’s biggest market for electric vehicles.

Investing in green transport is part of China’s so-called “war on pollution,” where air quality in its biggest cities often reaches hazardous levels—a problem the government is at pains to alleviate

Chinese leaders face the difficult choice of prioritizing either economic growth or environmental and social welfare. For the past several years, Beijing has a made a concerted effort to reduce high concentrations of air pollution across China.

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