Lion Electric
LionC All Electric Bus // Image by of Lion Electric

Lion Electric Company said last week that it has plans to help school districts around the United States receive the funding needed to obtain zero-emissions school buses for their fleets. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which passed late last year, dedicates a total of $5 billion to transitioning to the use of all-electric school buses throughout the next five years, starting with an initial $500 million offering.    

Under the Clean School Bus Program, priority districts such as those with notoriously high pollution are eligible to obtain up to $375,000 per zero-emission school bus, which may cover the entire costs of their fleet. Depending on eligibility circumstances, other districts will be able to receive up to $250,000 per bus. Despite the price of zero-emission buses being much higher than traditional combustion engine buses, electric buses expect to reduce maintenance and energy costs over time. 

The Environmental Protection Agency is reportedly planning on releasing an outline of which districts around the country are considered “priority” districts in the coming months. Lion Energy has also offered to assist EnergyStar in obtaining funding for the purchase and installation of its charging infrastructure. 

Lion Electric is currently the top zero-emission school bus manufacturer, and 550 of its vehicles are currently in use in the United States. The company’s Chief Executive Officer, Marc Bedard, said its first electric school bus started operations in 2016 and reiterated that the company plans to build 20,000 vehicles annually. He added, “This federal program is a major step in transitioning to sustainable school transportation, bringing significant improvements to the health of our children and communities.”

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