Image via Twitter @AndrewConstance

Electric buses cost $50,000 a year less to run compared with diesel fuelled buses. It’s a good grounding for the success of a new plant in the NSW southern Highlands that also promises 2000 new jobs.

As many as 2000 new jobs building electric buses, trucks, logistics vans and car will be created once a new zero emissions manufacturing facility in the NSW Southern Highlands is built.

The $700 million advanced manufacturing site will be built by electric vehicle manufacture Nexport, which is majority owned by TrueGreen Impact Group.

According to Nexport chief executive officer Luke Todd, the Southern Highlands town of Moss Vale was selected as a strategic location from which to service two cities with a strong interest in EVs, Canberra and Sydney.

Last year, New South Wales transport minister Andrew Constance committed to replace Sydney’s ageing fleet of 8000 diesel buses with electric buses. 

Five Newport electric buses have been trailed in the inner west of Sydney, with promising feedback from the community. Mr Todd said that the almost soundless electric buses were a welcome change from the noise of diesel-powered vehicles. 

In Canberra, the plan is to transition the bus fleet to 100 per cent electric by 2040 as part of its zero emissions ambitions

Mr Todd said that the 51-hectare manufacturing hub has been in the works for six years, with the partnership with TrueGreen “expediting plans dramatically.” 

He said the chief driver behind the project is job creation and upskilling in advanced manufacturing so that NSW can become a leader in EV manufacture. 

“It’s vital to Australia’s long-term future and prosperity that we look for advance CleanTech manufacturing opportunities that we can export to other countries.” 

He also said that advanced manufacturing has been a priority area as part of the Covid-recovery, with the delivery of 8000 EVs in NSW expected to inject $5.6 billion into the NSW economy. 

Although the ACT and NSW are leading the transition of state-owned bus fleets, other governments are showing increased interest now that electric buses equate to a saving of $50,000 less to run a year compared to a diesel equivalent.

“Across a 20-year lifespan, that amounts to $180,000.” 

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