NITI Aayog has launched the e-Sawaari India Electric Bus Coalition, in partnership with Convergence Energy Service (CESL) and World Resources Institute, India (WRI India), supported by Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative (TUMI).
Through the coalition, the Central-, state-, and city-level government agencies, transit service providers, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), financing institutions, and ancillary service providers will be able to share knowledge and their learnings on e-bus adoption in India.
The launch was attended by Amitabh Kant, CEO, NTI Aayog; MDs of State Transport Undertakings (STUs); Ashish Kundra IAS, Commissioner of Transport, Delhi; Dr. OP Agarwal, CEO, WRI India and Mahua Acharya, CEO, Convergence Energy Services (CESL) among others.
Amitabh Kant said, “Electrification of public transport especially in the bus sector, is key to India’s decarbonisation strategy. The e-Sawaari India Electric Bus Coalition is a step toward ensuring steady and paced electrification of the bus transport system in India. Identifying innovative means to address the challenges of procurement, operations and financing e-bus deployment at scale is crucial to achieve net zero emissions.”
Mahua Acharya said, “It is imperative for multiple players to come into the electric bus eco system – be it financiers, banking partners, IT service providers or utility firms in addition to state transport undertaking and original equipment manufacturers. An enabling ecosystem to access funding and financing of electric buses is the need of the hour for scaled up adoption of electric buses.”
Dr. OP Agarwal said, “Need of the hour is to find high-impact solutions to address urban pollution, nudging a positive climate action, and enhancing urban living. To scale up e-bus adoption, we need to address its challenges - procurement, operational and financial. As a coalition, e-Sawaari will be able to facilitate discussions and identify innovative solutions to scale up e-bus adoption.”
Rohan Shailesh Modi, Asia Co-ordinator -TUMI E-Bus Mission said, “The e-Saawari India electric bus coalition aims to give a fresh impetus to India's e-bus sector by bringing cities, private sector and financiers work jointly to address the sectoral challenges. TUMI E-Bus we need to address the challenges with protocooperation” Mission is happy to support this unique initiative co-led by NITI Aayog and CESL.”
Electric bus adoption has gained traction in India and multiple cities and their governments have embarked on the journey of electrifying their bus-based transport system. The recent impetus from the government of India to aggregate e-bus demand from the nine largest Indian cities - under the ambit of the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles in India (FAME) scheme, Phase – II, through the ongoing Grand Challenge for Deployment of e-Buses - has encouraged more State Government Undertakings (STUs) to change their bus fleet to electric.
Ashish Kundra, principal secretary, government of Delhi said, “The switch to electric mobility not only has economic logic but it is the solution to mitigate climate change. However, this transition requires active dialog between the industry and the government, and this coalition will help bind the two.”
Mahesh Babu, CEO, Switch Mobility, Ashok Leyland said, “To relieve pressure on OEMs, multi-partner equity involvement is necessary, if the target of 66,000 electric buses by 2030 is to be achieved. If OEMs can integrate with STUs the drive towards the standardization of the EV ecosystem will be quicker.”
Udhay Khemka, VC, Sun Group said “Our focus on mobility is to ensure there are large pools of capital for electrification of the bus public transport system in India. Our aim is to offer yield equity with appropriate infrastructure and capital.”
Manish Chourasia, MD, Tata Cleantech Capital said “Tata Cleantech Capital, a joint venture between Tata Capital and International Financial Capital is emerging with financial solutions to support India’s clean energy transition. ‘As a Green Investment Bank,’ with focus on climate finance and advisory services, we believe in the scalability of e-bus operations in the country and are committed to it.”
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