Yesterday the Mayor proudly announced that he has paid Â£9.68 million for ten buses. They are wonderful American hydrogen powered buses but you have got to think that they must be gold-plated into the bargain.
It is all very well pioneering the outer reaches of green technology but it is unaffordable. We know from TfL’s own figures that we are already subsidising London’s buses to the tune of Â£617 million.
We know from TfL itself that its bus occupancy figure is only 15. In other words the average London bus has 15 passengers at any one time.
If the Mayor was really green rather than just being a poseur he would not be buying gold plated buses. He would work out how to increase occupancy. Only this might involve him having to look at some services that are not actually used enough. Empty buses costing us Â£617 million are not green. If he was still intent on spending cash after that he might look at increasing the efficiency of current buses. That wouldn’t be very exciting but it might be a whole lot more effective.