For 75 years, Wrightbus has helped people reach their destinations all over the world with iconic buses that have defined public transport.
Wrightbus buses help promote economic growth, reduce road congestion, make transport equitable, and even help improve public health. Wrightbus vehicles have already kickstarted the development of a net-zero economy, creating ‘green’ jobs and growing new sustainable innovation. Its comprehensive sustainable zero-emission portfolio, which is having a significant impact on business and wider society and environment, is the product of: Exceptional Leadership & Strategy; Robust policies and processes; Encouraging Sustainable Activities and Engagement; Establishing Measurement, Evaluation and Reporting KPI’s; Pioneering Innovation and Knowledge Transferability.
What Wrightbus did
Wrightbus is one of the world’s most prominent bus manufacturers, working to offer a comprehensive portfolio of single and double-deck battery-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.
Wrightbus currently has the largest fleet of hydrogen buses in Europe and second largest in the world, with 90 in operation across the UK and Ireland. It launched the world’s first electric double decker in Belfast in March 2022.
Later this year, single-deck versions of Hydroliner and Electroliner buses will be launched, making Wrightbus the only manufacturer globally to offer the full portfolio of zero-emission buses.
During COVID 19, Wrightbus lobbied the UK government for support for manufacturers and operators and introduced several sustainability initiatives to help grow Wrightbus.
It has designed an Environmental Management System internally tailored to suit its organisational goals and objectives and utilises a New-Product Introduction Process (NPIP) to guide the design, development and evaluation or their new zero-emission products. NPIP aims to ensure all products meet customer needs as well as business constraints. It has enhanced interaction with suppliers and customers and welcomed their input.
The organisation has signed up as a BITC Climate Champion and is developing a Carbon Reduction Plan with the aim of becoming a net-zero company by 2050.
Wrightbus has nominated “Net-Zero Champions” (NZC) from its “Carbon Reduction Committee”, which represents diverse areas of the business: Engineering, Manufacturing, IT, Finance, and Health and Safety). Several of these Net-Zero champions have undergone Carbon Literacy Training. It will be their responsibility to help Wrightbus meet legal and moral and obligations; understand current carbon footprints in all areas of business; set out a plan to reduce carbon footprint; engage the workforce; define changes that need to be made; and clearly communicate company intentions and what needs to be delivered.
The company has established a process for tracking resource use contributing to climate change, with the aim of using the tool to set science-based targets and identify how it can adjust activities and offset emissions in the future. It is Wrightbus’ intention to produce an annual Environmental, Social and Governance report to showcase its targets and motivate the business and customers to address sustainability objectives.
Benefits for Business and Society
- Employee development through upskilling personnel in zero-emission technologies
- Wrightbus’ first electric double decker, the zero-emission Streetdeck Electroliner, was launched in Belfast in March 2022 and represented a landmark moment for Belfast in the move towards cleaner transport solutions
- Later this year single-deck versions of Hyroliner and Electrliner buses will be launched, making Wrightbus the only manufacturer globally to offer the full portfolio of zero-emission buses. This has enabled Wrightbus to target expansion into Germany, Italy, Franc, Spain, Australia and Hong Kong
- As recently as 2019, only 56 staff remained with Wrightbus. Now the company is on track to employ more than 900 staff this year
- Production is doubling compared to 2021, largely thanks to zero-emission bus orders
- Wrightbus buses will accelerate the development of a net-zero economy, creating ‘green’ jobs and growing sustainable supply chains
- Vehicles are already having a positive impact on environment. Designed to be the most energy efficient buses on the market, they reduce carbon footprint and air pollution
- At the end of a 15-year service, it is estimated that battery-electric buses could reduce CO2 emissions by 36-69% compared to current diesel operations. Hydrogen fuel-cell buses are estimated to save 45-63% on CO2 emissions
What the Judges said
“Wrightbus not only showed demonstrated its positive impact on the environment and its community, but are also market leaders who are always looking for the next innovation. The societal benefits are vast with reduced emissions as well as education for local schools and universities. Wrightbus is also sharing its knowledge with other NI businesses. – a truly inspirational and deserved winner of the 2022 Responsible Product/Service Award.”