The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) this week announced more than $2.1 million in grants for its electric school bus pilot project.
Eight new electric school buses are expected to serve five Minnesota school districts. Recipients of the grants, funded by the Volkswagen emissions fraud settlement, include:
- Faribault Transportation Services, with one bus to serve Faribault Public Schools
- Monarch Bus Services, with one bus serving St. Paul or Columbia Heights public schools
- Morris Area School District, with two buses
- Northstar Bus Lines, with three buses serving Osseo Area Schools
- Ottertail Coaches, with one bus to serve Fergus Falls Public Schools
Some of the newly funded buses already have begun transporting Minnesota students, with the rest expected to be in service by fall 2022. Grantees also receive charging stations.
The MCPA’s electric school bus pilot project is intended to support cleaner vehicle technology and reduce harmful air pollution, with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050.
Besides removing older, more polluting diesel buses off the roads, the pilot project is designed to help determine the viability of electric bus technology in Minnesota’s colder climes, according to the MPCA.