South Pole to support electric bus programme in Bangkok

08 March 2023 2 min. read

Thai energy firm Energy Absolute Public Company has contracted sustainability consultancy South Pole to assist the development of the Bangkok E-Bus Program. The programme will swap out the entire Bangkok Metropolitan Area’s fleet of diesel buses with electric vehicles.

Thailand and Switzerland have joined forces to spearhead the Bangkok E-Bus Programme, an initiative to electrify the Thai capital’s privately-operated public bus system. The city’s fleet of buses will be upgraded to electric vehicles, which are expected to reduce air pollution and harmful emissions across the greater Bangkok Metropolitan Area.

South Pole will have a role in developing the project, enabling Thailand and Switzerland to act on a cooperation agreement signed under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, which encourages international collaboration on climate goals.

South Pole to support electric bus programme in Bangkok

The electrification of the city’s bus fleet is seen as a flagship program with Thailand, one that stakeholders hope will lead to further adoption of electric vehicles in Thailand.

“The Swiss and Thai governments are demonstrating extraordinary climate leadership to make this change by authorising the first Article 6 programme in Asia. This programme channels climate finance from Switzerland to the Bangkok E-Bus programme, marking a significant step in decarbonising the Thai mobility sector, improving air quality in the capital and improving the wellbeing of those who call it home,” said Karolien Casaer-Diez from South Pole.

The E-bus programme is supported by the Foundation for Climate Protection and Carbon Offset KliK (KliK Foundation), which will purchase the carbon credits resulting from the substantial offset. These two groups signed a purchase agreement in June 2022 in which they pledged to buy the Thai E-bus programme’s Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes (ITMO). ITMOs are a specific type of carbon credit sanctioned by the Paris Agreement.

Carbon credits are basically tradable certificates that can be bought and sold on the voluntary carbon market. These credits provide a financial incentive for organisations to makes stride towards sustainability by reducing their emission. When an organisation reduces their emissions, they amass carbon credits that can later be sold, but if they produce an excess of emissions, they need to buy carbon credits from other organisations or can face fines.

“Carbon markets at scale can significantly reduce the cost of decarbonising our economies and societies — vital action to stave off the worst impact of climate change,” said Casaer-Diez.