Brussels Airport to green its fleet with electric buses and natural gas vehicles

February 4, 2016

Brussels Airport Company has issued an invitation to tender for the purchase of 30 electric buses to transport passengers at the airport. In addition, Brussels Airport Company will replace 40 service vehicles over the next two years with vehicles running on natural gas. Brussels Airport Company is investing in these new technologies in order to reduce its carbon footprint, and at the same time to improve passenger comfort.

Brussels Airport Company is renewing its bus and car fleet at the airport in order to reduce the fine dust, the CO2 and odour nuisance at the airport significantly. The airport operator wants to purchase 30 electric buses, and will therefore have to install electric charging points and adapt the electricity network. In addition, Brussels Airport Company will replace 40 service vehicles over the next two years with vehicles running on natural gas. For any other future replacements too, the company will first check the possibility to deploy an environmentally-friendly vehicle.

"In 2011 we committed ourselves as airport operator to reduce our CO2 emissions by 20% by 2020 compared to 2009. When we plan the purchase of new equipment, we look for an environmentally-friendly alternative offering at the same time more comfort to our passengers. The choice for electric buses and natural gas vehicles came forward quite logically. Vehicles running on natural gas emit 90% less fine dust than those running on traditional fuels. Electric vehicles actually emit no fine dust or CO2 at all and there is no odour nuisance from the exhaust. In the buses we will also be installing Wi-Fi and information screens so that passengers can be connected and informed", says Arnaud Feist, CEO of Brussels Airport Company.

The electric buses at Brussels Airport should be driving around by the beginning of 2018, giving us an annual reduction of 600 tonnes of CO2. The buses at Brussels Airport transport passengers between the piers and the aircraft, and transfer passengers between Pier A and Pier B. The buses are also used for the transport on the tarmac at events or guided visits, and also take staff and passengers from the terminal to the car parks at Brucargo or vice-versa. For the last-mentioned route, there will be a driverless electric shuttle. The electric bus will be used until the shuttle goes into service.

In addition to the purchase of 30 electric buses, Brussels Airport Company has decided to gradually 'green' its fleet of service vehicles on the airport premises and where possible
deploy environmentally-friendly vehicles. The first 40 natural gas vehicles should be driving around Brussels Airport within two years, and in the following years the service vehicles will be replaced according to need. Natural gas vehicles emit 90% less fine dust and 20% less CO2 than diesel and petrol vehicles. There is also no smell from the exhaust.

Brussels Airport Company has signed a partnership agreement with Eandis, under which Eandis will be responsible for the joint purchase of sustainable alternatives.

"Eandis is delighted to put the motto 'dealing intelligently with energy' into practice together with Brussels Airport. Natural gas vehicles fit in perfectly with the sustainable evolution towards complementary mobility alternatives that each play their part in a healthy energy mix, including driving on electricity and natural gas", says CEO Walter van den Bossche.

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