First two CO school districts with electric-powered school buses highlighted during National Drive Electric Week event

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DENVER:  During National Drive Electric Week, CoPIRG highlighted that dozens more electric-powered school buses are headed to CO in the coming years to join the two school districts in Boulder and Kremmling that have the first electric buses on the road. Electric-powered school buses are a critical solution in both the fight against climate change and protecting Colorado children from harmful diesel emissions.  CoPIRG is calling on Congress to pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill and get more electric buses on Colorado roads.   

“Over 95% of current school buses run on diesel, where the exhaust is linked to severe cardiovascular and respiratory health effects and contributes to the pollution of our air, water and soil,” said Alex Simon, advocate for CoPIRG. “Our students and all Coloradans deserve better.  With new rounds of funding becoming available, we are eager to see more school districts make the move to electric buses.”

Because they don’t burn fossil fuels, electric school buses do not have the negative health and environmental impacts associated with typical diesel buses. As such, they are a critical tool in fighting for the health of our students and communities as well as tackling climate change.  Negative health consequences also tend to impact children in low-income communities disproportionately.  

“The kids who depend on school buses to get to school are more likely to be from low-income communities that are already unfairly impacted by poor air quality. Delaying the adoption of electric school buses across the state falls on the backs of those communities that most need improvements to their air quality, and since we know that electric buses actually save districts money, any delay also effectively diverts  desperately needed resources towards supporting harmful transit,” said Miranda Meadow, with the social justice group Mothers Out Front.  

National Drive Electric Week, which kicked off on September 25 and runs through October 3, is happening as Congress is considering massive federal investments in electric vehicle infrastructure. The bill would provide $2.5 million specifically for electric school buses, $7.5 billion for EV charging infrastructure, and another $2.5 million for low-emission buses.  

This year, Colorado school districts received funding from the latest round of Colorado Alt Fuels money stemming from the Volkswagen settlement for 17 more electric school buses in Colorado, bringing the total to 32 (of which 3 have been delivered).  Districts that ordered electric buses include Boulder Valley, Vail Valley, West Grand Valley, Denver, Aurora, Fort Collins, Durango, Aspen, Buena Vista, Hayden, Steamboat Springs, and Colorado Springs. 

staff | TPIN

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