Buses are the most fuel-efficient transportation mode in the United States when measured in terms of passenger miles per gallon of fuel.
Buses on average provided 184.4 passenger miles per gallon of fuel in 2006, more than six times that of a single passenger automobile at 27.7 passenger miles per gallon.
The typical bus replaces an average of 36 cars, making bus travel much more fuel efficient and cleaner for the environment, per person, than any car, electric hybrid or otherwise.
Kobussen Buses Ltd. The Eco-Efficient Choice
In April of 2006, Kobussen Buses retrofitted 35 buses with diesel oxidation catalyst (DOC). According to the EPA emissions reductions for the school buses equipped with the DOC device are 50% for HC, 40% for CO and 20% for PM.
Kobussen Buses has become more aggressive at replacing older diesel buses with new clean Diesel buses. Kobussen Buses has one of the newest bus fleets in Wisconsin. February 2010, Kobussen Buses earned the National School Transportation Association (NSTA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Green School Bus Fleet Certification – Gold Level. This certification recognizes Kobussen Buses for their commitment to improving the environment through cleaner school bus fleets and company-wide practices to reduce engine exhaust emissions and conserve fuel.
Kobussen Buses achieved the Green School Bus Fleet Certification – Gold Level because:
• 70% of their school bus fleet is model year 2004 or newer. School buses built in 2004 or later emit six times less pollution than those built prior to 2004.
• 50% of the Kobussen Buses’ school bus fleet is compliant with the EPA’s 2007 engine emission requirements. School buses built to meet the 2007 engine standards emit sixty times less pollution than older, non-compliant models.
• Kobussen Buses has programs in place to conserve fuel and reduce idling. Idle reduction programs reduce the amount of unhealthy diesel exhaust that can affect children, waste fuel, and waste taxpayer dollars.
Kobussen Buses also uses engine pre-heaters that heat up the engines without idling - reducing expensive downtime and eliminating "white smoke". These heaters raise the temperature of the engine's coolant gradually, assuring an even heating of the engine block. This means increased fuel efficiency and a cleaner environment.
By tapping directly into the fuel and power supply of the vehicle, the engine pre-heater avoids the need for external hook ups- so it operates no matter where the vehicle is located. Warm starts reduce engine stress and wear and reduce battery demand. Engine pre-heaters provide smooth start ups, a warmer bus for the students and it improves emissions.
For more than 20 years, Kobussen Buses, Ltd. has saved energy by recycling used engine oil. The used engine oil is burned in a special furnace to heat the maintenance facilities.
The green efforts extend into office practices as well. The staff uses GPS and route planning software to make routes more efficient. Kobussen also has replaced office and maintenance facilities lighting with more efficient florescent lights, this saves energy and has a payback of about 5 years.