The state of South Carolina has finalized a procurement order with dealer Interstate...

The state of South Carolina has finalized a procurement order with dealer Interstate Transportation for a total of 160 new electric school buses funded by the EPA's Clean School Bus Program.

Image: Thomas Built Buses

The next year will see 160 new electric school buses deployed across the state of South Carolina now that the S.C. Department of Education has finalized procurement of Proterra-powered Thomas Built Saf-T-Liner C2 Jouleys from dealer Interstate Transportation.

It represents the single largest order to date of electric school buses funded entirely by the federal Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean School Bus Program.

“The South Carolina Department of Education is proud to partner with Thomas Built Buses and Proterra to bring more zero-emission, all-electric school buses to our state. We’re excited to see the positive impact these buses will have on our community,” said Mike Bullman, transportation director for the SCDOE. “This partnership puts South Carolina at the forefront of the vehicle electrification movement and brings us one step closer towards building a healthier and more sustainable future for the next generation of students.”

Thomas Built Buses and Proterra offer school bus operators a comprehensive, turn-key electric vehicle program that includes EV planning and funding consultation, electric school buses, charging systems, and charging infrastructure design and installation. The Saf-T-Liner C2 Jouley couples 226 kWh of onboard energy from Proterra’s battery technology to offer up to 135 miles of drive range to meet the needs of school bus fleets. With more than 300 buses on the road, Saf-T-Liner C2 Jouley electric school buses have driven more than 1-million miles for school districts across North America.

Thomas Built Buses is currently the only school bus manufacturer to offer DC fast-charging architecture as standard equipment. The Jouley can charge in about three hours and can supply power back to the grid using vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology.

“We applaud the state of South Carolina for their commitment to providing emission-free pupil transportation solutions to the many areas awarded funding through the Clean School Bus Program,” said Kevin Bangston, president and CEO of Thomas Built Buses. “It’s an ambitious undertaking and we are proud to be a key partner in this initiative.”

“With our company’s long history in South Carolina, Proterra is thrilled to see the surge in the number and variety of schools that will soon have access to electric school buses in the state that many of our employees call home. Knowing that the EV technologies we’re building at our Powered 1 battery factory in Greer, S.C. are enabling the next generation of clean, quiet transportation for South Carolina students makes this news even more special to our Proterra team. Now, through initiatives like the EPA’s Clean School Bus Program, even more students and communities are accelerating the transition to an all-electric, emissions-free future,” said Chris Bailey, Proterra’s chief business officer.

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