PLANS for an electric bus depot on the outskirts of Carmarthen have been unanimously approved.

Carmarthenshire Council’s planning committee endorsed a planning officer recommendation for the scheme at Carmarthen park and ride, Llysonnen Road.

The new depot will have four charging points to power up eight new electric buses which will ply the Carmarthen-Aberystwyth route.

They will replace the diesel buses which currently undertake the 48-mile journey, incorporating Lampeter.

Planning committee chairman and Carmarthen Town South ward member, Cllr Alun Lenny, said the depot location was ideal and that he was in no doubt that electric buses were the future.

Cllrs Carys Jones and Kevin Madge also spoke to support the county council’s application.

“Hopefully there will be more of these projects in the years to come,” said Cllr Madge.

The council has been given £4.8 million by the Welsh Government to build the depot, which will include a meeting room, staff toilets and a shower, and buy the buses.

The Welsh Government expects the new buses to be operational in late 2022.

The depot and buses will be made available to the operator who is awarded the next contract to operate the service. The existing contract with First Cymru for the Traws Cymru T1 service is due to expire in autumn 2022.

The Welsh Government wants Wales to be net zero in terms of carbon emissions by 2050, if not sooner, with clean buses, trains and cars playing their part.