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China Rolls out Low Emission Bus
A bus manufacturer in the northern port city of Tianjin has rolled out the country's first China-made low emission bus fueled by natural gas.

Its emission of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon is only 5 percent of the maximum level allowed by China's environmental protection authorities, according to a report issued by the national quality supervision and inspection center for motor vehicles.

The bus will be priced at around 220,000 yuan (US$26,506), 45 percent lower than the cost of other clean fuel buses which are already in operation in many cities, said a source with the Tianjin Autobus Assembly Plant, manufacturer of the new bus.

Though many Chinese cities have replaced traditional fuels with liquefied petroleum gas and other types of clean energy to minimize pollution, high costs have always been a problem for public transport authorities.

As most domestic bus makers have to rely on imports for engines, chassis and other major parts, the average price for an environment friendly bus always hovers around 400,000 yuan (US$48,193).

Once the new bus is put into mass production in March, 2003, public transport authorities can also expect to save on fuel costs, said Wang Guoyu, a senior engineer with the plant.

For every 100 kilometers (62 miles), the new bus consumes 22 cubic meters of natural gas at the unit price of 1.8 yuan, whereas a traditional bus has to consume 20 liters of fuel at 2.8 yuan per unit to cover the same distance, he said.

(People's Daily November 27, 2002)

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