MOSCOW, Feb 19 (Reuters) - Moscow plans to nearly quadruple the number of electric buses it operates in coming years and replace all petrol or diesel-powered public transport vehicles with greener alternatives by 2030, a senior city transport official has said.
Mosgortrans, which runs Moscow's vast bus and tram network, said its fleet of around 600 electric buses would be expanded by 400 vehicles by the year-end, by another 420 the following year, and then by 855, bringing the fleet to more than 2,000 e-buses.
"Every year the plan will be to replace all wheeled public transport vehicles with electric buses," said Artyom Burlakov, deputy head of the innovative projects department at Mosgortrans.
Environmental activists have welcomed the initiative.
"They are also buying new, more power-efficient trams, which is a good thing," said Mikhail Babenko, head of the green economy programme at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia.
Babenko said there was still a long way to go, however, when it came to Muscovites changing their own behaviour and turning their backs on cars in favour of greener alternatives.
The Russian capital remains infamous for its traffic jams. (Reporting by Dmitry Madorsky, Lev Sergeev, Mikhail Antonov and Tatiana Gomozova; Writing by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; Editing by Andrew Osborn and Alex Richardson)