More electric school buses will be on Michigan’s roadways this year, partly thanks to a federal grant helping 25 school districts make their first electric school bus purchase, reported The Detroit News.
Last month, Dearborn Public Schools purchased its first electric bus, a Blue Bird All American RE electric. This zero-emission bus can carry up to 84 passengers and travel up to 120 miles on a single charge, according to the manufacturer claim.
This bus takes about three to eight hours to fully recharge depending on the charging infrastructure.
School officials reportedly stated this school bus is the first of many more that the Wayne County district will purchase with the help of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grant.
Glenn Maleyko, Deaborn superintendent, said via the article that the district already has a fleet of 70 diesel fuel-burning Blue Bird buses and that adding electric vehicles will help the district reduce harmful greenhouse gas emission while improving student and community health.
The districts reportedly anticipate cost savings in operating the ESBs, which typically cost about 14 cents a mile on energy compared to approximately 49 cents per mile in a diesel engine bus.
The bus was funded with a mix of federal grant dollars and district funds. The EPA provided an initial grant of $300,000 through the Clean School Bus Rebate Program, which aims to replace older diesel school buses with zero-emission electric buses.
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