Australia, Bus Industry News, Company News

Kinetic launches first zero-emission bus into remote resource region

Kinetic says that the launch of battery electric BLK Auto buses into Central Queensland is a major milestone for the Australian bus industry

Australasian bus and coach operator Kinetic has announced that two of its battery electric buses have been launched into Central Queensland’s Bowen Basin. 

The fully electric vehicles will provide contracted village/town-to-worksite transport for both the BHP Mitsubishi Alliance and mining company Anglo American. 

Kinetic says these vehicles are among the first zero-emission coaches to operate in Australia’s remote resources-rich region. 

Kinetic Central Queensland executive general manager Marcia Shield says the introduction of zero-emission buses into these regions marks a progress milestone for the industry. 

“The resource sector is arguably the engine room of the Australian economy and there is an industry-wide commitment to delivering better environmental outcomes through the decarbonisation of operations,” Shield says. 

“This approach is representative of our clients’ value proposition and initiatives dedicated to their commitment to sustainable mining solutions, with key decarbonisation projects underway. 

“Transportation of personnel to remote work sites is an area with immediate opportunity to deliver emissions reductions, although it comes with its inherent and obvious challenges. 

“The unique operating climate, long journeys and relatively new technology has led to significant planning and cooperation with the industry to launch these vehicles in a way that logistically makes sense and provides real learnings for broader adoption.” 

The three-axle vehicles were procured from BLK Auto and have an expected range of approximately 400 kms per charge. Charging unit sites in Moranbah and Middlemount will support the coaches, with an average charging time of eight hours. 

Kinetic says it has a fleet of 239 specialist vehicles providing village/town-to-site and on-site shuttles, airport transfers and chargers that is currently supporting resources regions in Gladstone, the Bowen Basin, Mackay, Bundaberg, Perth, Darwin and Olympic Dam. 

Shield says the remote locations and significant travel distances presented unique challenges when introducing the new fleet. 

“While electric vehicles are becoming more common place for personal use or public transport in urban centres, there are naturally additional requirements within the resources industry,” Shield says. 

“In addition to ensuring adequate range and charging infrastructure is in place to meet the challenging logistics and operating environment, the vehicles must also meet industry safety and compliance standards that are aligned to the requirements of the operations that they service. 

“The health and wellbeing of personnel are absolutely critical to the operations of our clients, and this is prioritised above all else. 

“These two new electric vehicles have been equipped with the same high-quality features as the rest of our resources fleet, including seatbelt alarms, in-vehicle monitoring and real-time management of driver fatigue and road conditions.” 

While these buses are the first to enter Kinetic’s resource bus operations, there’s more than 250 of these electric buses that Kinetic has introduced to its fleet across Australia and New Zealand. 

Kinetic says that number will grow to 300 this year as it progresses towards an entirely zero-emission bus fleet by 2035. 

Kinetic says that zero-emission bus operations is among its key sustainability priorities alongside targets encouraging more women into its workforce and building more inclusive workplaces and services. 

  1. Australian Truck Radio Listen Live
Send this to a friend