Electric Bus Crisis in Greece: Parking Lot Nightmare Due to Charger Scarcity

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Just one-third of Greece's new fleet of electric buses are operational due to a severe shortage of chargers. Of the 140 Yutong Buus electric buses purchased, a staggering 94 remain stranded, awaiting the infrastructure necessary to power them.

Electric Bus Crisis in Greece: Parking Lot Nightmare Due to Charger Scarcity 1

The integration of these buses into the Athens urban transport system aimed to revolutionize public transportation. However, without adequate charging capabilities, progress has come to a standstill.

Sources within the Infrastructure and Transport Ministry indicate that the number of operating buses will gradually increase, with the goal of having all vehicles in service by August's end.

The issue stems from insufficient temporary charging facilities established at five train stations. Designed to provide 10-12 chargers each, these stations cannot meet the demands of the entire bus fleet.

Delays in signing a €9.85 million contract with EYDROMOS ATE for permanent charging infrastructure have further hindered progress. The installation of 70 90KW chargers at OSY's depots has been postponed by approximately two months.

OSY management, however, refutes claims that the shortage of chargers is behind the gradual integration of buses. Instead, they maintain that this strategy was adopted to ensure smoother operations. Nonetheless, they do not rule out the potential of having all 140 buses in service by June.

A similar situation persists in Thessaloniki, where only 7 out of 110 electric buses acquired by OASTH have entered service. Despite having a slightly better charging infrastructure, integration remains slow.

Despite these setbacks, the goal remains to modernize Greece's bus fleet significantly. Starting in 2019, public tenders and initiatives seek to introduce 1,500 new technology buses to Athens' streets by 2027. However, until the charging crisis is resolved, the true potential of these eco-friendly vehicles remains on pause.

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