New York funds charging infrastructure for electric school buses

The US state of New York will subsidise charging infrastructure for electric school buses. Governor Kathy Hochul announced that funding is now available for AC and DC chargers.

Image: Blue Bird

The amount of funding is based on the number of electric school buses a school district or bus operator has or is planning to purchase. According to a press release by the NY governor’s office, it will award at least 25,000 per bus “to cover hardware, customer-side electrical site upgrades, installation costs, and battery storage.” So-called priority districts can receive an extra 10,00 dollars per bus.

The money comes from the $4.2 billion Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act and the New York School Bus Incentive Programme. However, funds are limited and will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis. For school districts and bus operators to be eligible, the electric school buses must have been purchased after 1 January 2023.

New York requires all new school buses sold to be zero-emission by 2027. By 2035, all school buses in service must be ZEVs. In September, the state governor announced the first 100 million dollars round of funding to kick-start the move away from ICE vehicles. According to an official press release by the state of New York, 500 million dollars will be allotted for zero-emission school buses and infrastructure under the New York School Bus Incentive Program (NYSBIP), part of the above-mentioned Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act.

“New York’s continued investment in electric school buses represents a profound leap towards a cleaner future and will safeguard student health by reducing harmful emissions and improving local air quality,” says Doreen M. Harris, CEO and President of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). “As schools begin to make the transition, comprehensive fleet planning can help districts understand their unique needs and best capitalise on this critical funding to help cover charging installation costs.”

“Today’s announcement is another important step in supporting school districts and bus fleet owners by providing vital infrastructure upgrades to support zero-emission school bus fleets by 2035,” adds New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos. “Working with NYSERDA and other partners, DEC is leveraging Environmental Bond Act funding opportunities to advance climate action in communities statewide, one school bus at a time.”


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