California-based Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District (FSUSD) recently received a grant to purchase two propane school buses.
The $268,000 grant from California’s Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality Standards Attainment Program was awarded to the district in partnership with the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), according to a news release from FSUSD. The program is designed to provide funding for upgrades and/or replacements of heavy-duty diesel vehicles and equipment, including school buses, throughout the Bay Area.
As part of the grant program's requirements, FSUSD will decommission two of its oldest diesel buses, according to the district.
“Our partnership with the Bay Area Air Quality Management District and the Carl Moyer Grant Program has allowed us to significantly reduce our carbon footprint through the decommissioning and replacement of old diesel bus models, with newer and more efficient models,” said Marcela Arizpuro, FSUSD’s director of transportation, in the district’s news release. “As it stands today, 30% of our buses are now more environmentally friendly and we expect that to grow.”
Abigail Hilliard, the district’s communications manager and public information officer, told School Bus Fleet that FSUSD has participated in the Carl Moyer Program for over a decade, which has resulted in the replacement of a total of 20 “fuel-inefficient school buses,” valuing at approximately $2.7 million.
“At present, the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District maintains a fleet of 49 buses, of which 47 remain diesel,” Hilliard said. “Thanks to participation in the Carl Moyer Program, nearly half of all remaining diesel buses have been outfitted with more fuel-efficient engines.”
With the recent acquisition of the propane buses, Hilliard said that the alternatively-fueled buses are “a promising start to near-zero emission transportation” for FSUSD, and that the district “looks forward to applying for additional grants through the Carl Moyer Program and the BAAQMD in order to expand its near-zero emissions fleet.”
FSUSD currently plans to run its two propane buses on the district's special-education routes, according to Hilliard.