Colombia’s National Environmental Licenses Authority (ANLA) has approved environmental certifications for mass transit companies in the country to access tax benefits in the form of VAT exemptions when incorporating non-conventional renewable energy sources for their fleet operations. Natural gas fueled buses will qualify for VAT exemption, local media reports ANLA as confirming.
In this way, ANLA contributes to the reduction and prevention of air pollution and stimulates the use of clean technologies, adding actions in line with the National Government’s goal, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%. According to Naturgas (the Colombian natural gas association), poor air quality reduces life expectancy by 1.8 years, and in Colombia there are 15 thousand premature deaths per year associated with this situation.
The tax exemptions will apply to public transportation systems in Bogotá, Medellín and Pereira.
Benefits for Bogotá
In recent months Bogotá has been confronted with alerts triggered by the progressive deterioration of air quality in at least five monitoring stations of the surveillance network of the capital. The measurements are associated with the concentration of particulate matter in the atmosphere, with emissions from gasoline and diesel powered vehicles being identified as one of the main sources of pollution.
Hence the entry into operation of more than 400 buses that will use Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and that will be incorporated into the TransMilenio fleets at points such as Suba, 80th Street and the north of the city, where they will aid in reducing the emission of substances pollutants. When the buses have been delivered, TransMilenio will have 741 Euro VI-standard vehicles operating with CNG.