Kenya signs $59m deal with US aid agency to acquire electric buses
A landmark deal has been signed between Kenya’s President, William Ruto, and the US foreign aid agency, the Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC).
The agreement is valued at Ksh8.7 billion ($59.2 million) and aims at procuring electric buses to reduce traffic congestion within the Nairobi Metro Area. The electric buses are expected to operate on Line 2 of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system.
The Blended Finance for BRT Project
This initiative is known as the Blended Finance for BRT Project and is designed to promote private financing for the purchase of electric or other low emission buses.
These buses are intended to be used on one or more lines of the BRT system, which is currently being prepared for the Nairobi metropolitan area. The MCC has provided details about this project on their official website.
The project is not only expected to ensure the timely operation of BRT lines but also to contribute towards achieving Kenya’s goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions originating from urban transportation.
This aligns with the global efforts to combat climate change by transitioning to greener, more sustainable forms of transport.
Impacting Nairobi’s Traffic and Pollution
The Nairobi Metro Area is often burdened with heavy traffic, leading to long commute times and increased air pollution. The introduction of electric buses in the public transportation system can significantly alleviate these issues.
Electric buses, apart from being a solution to traffic congestion, are also eco-friendly with zero tailpipe emissions, contributing to improved air quality in the city.
While the current deal focuses on Line 2 of the BRT, successful implementation could pave the way for expanding the project to other lines and areas. This would mean not just a transformation of Nairobi’s public transport system, but also a significant step towards creating a more sustainable and environmentally friendly urban environment in Kenya.
Additionally, the success of this initiative could serve as a model for other African cities facing similar challenges.
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