L.A. Metro wants to spend $138 million on electric buses. The goal: An emission-free fleet by 2030 (via LA Times)

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Southern California’s biggest transit agency retired its last diesel bus six years ago, capping a 15-year process to replace tailpipes that belched black smoke with quieter, cleaner engines powered by natural gas.

Now, Los Angeles County transportation leaders are working toward a bolder goal: buses that don’t pollute at all.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has begun to plan how to eliminate emissions from its fleet by 2030, a move that will require buying more than 2,300 buses that run on electric batteries or another form of zero-emission power, such as hydrogen.

 

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A Los Angeles Teen is Fighting to Get City Buses to Run on Clean Energy (via VICE Impact)

by MILTON PAEZ

“Making this switch would be a big deal for our climate, but arguably an even bigger deal for communities like mine.”

This is an opinion piece for the Sierra Club by Milton Paez, a high school student from LA.

 

Like most US cities, the majority of the people taking public transportation in Los Angeles County are low-income. My Canoga Park neighbors and I use the bus to get to work, the grocery store and our friends’ houses, which is why my community is situated in one of the busiest bus corridors in Metro’s service area. Our reliance on public transportation brings pollution-spewing buses to our streets, which contributes to our notoriously bad air quality– a problem that also disproportionately damages low-income communities across the country. It’s a double edged sword. We need the buses to get around, but the buses’ pollution contributes to our poor air quality that makes us sick.

READ THE REST OF THE PIECE ON VICE IMPACT

Today’s LA Daily News: Metro electric buses could deliver for workers as well as environment: Guest commentary

Courtesy of the LA Daily News: http://www.dailynews.com/opinion/20170720/metro-electric-buses-could-deliver-for-workers-as-well-as-environment-guest-commentary

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) has been a leader in advancing clean-air solutions for public transportation dating back to the early 1990s, when it became the largest transit agency in the country to transition from diesel to natural gas buses. Recognizing that its current fleet still runs on fossil fuels and that cleaner bus technology options exist, Metro is about to weigh a big decision to phase out fossil fuels and move to all-electric buses.

On July 27, the Metro board is expected to formally vote on a transition to a 100 percent zero-emissions electric bus fleet by 2030.

Replacing Metro’s fleet with electric buses would be a critical step toward protecting our health and environment.

Metro’s current, fossil-fuel-dependent fleet is adding pollution to a region suffering from the worst smog in the nation, which results in 5,000 deaths per year.

Beyond creating environmental benefits, Metro can craft a comprehensive policy that uses our transit investments in new clean buses to cultivate a more just economy. With robust policies, Metro can attract thousands of good jobs in electric-bus manufacturing and charging-unit installation, especially for people who have been left out of the emerging tech economy, such as women, people of color and low-income residents.

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What Will Power Los Angeles’ Electric Buses? 100% Renewable Power if we have our way!

By Evan Gillespie, courtesy of Medium.com, originally published July 10, 2017 at: https://medium.com/@ecgill/what-will-power-los-angeles-electric-buses-2b5ee70f0c1c

What Will Power Los Angeles’ Electric Buses?

As the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (Metro) gears up to adopt a 100 percent zero-emission electric bus policy, there has been some recent chatter about the source of electricity powering these buses. Gas industry representatives are arguing that Metro should keep their current fleet of buses and power them with biomethane. They contend that electrifying buses means moving to coal-powered buses. They argue we have to wait until 2045 to reap the benefits of electric buses.

So what’s going on? Are environmental groups fighting for a suboptimal environmental outcome? Or, is this just more shenanigans from the gas industry? Does moving to electric buses help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, or do upstream emissions from power plants mean more pollution? This post attempts to answer these questions.

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JOIN the L.A. County Electric Bus Coalition at L.A. Metro Thursday, July 27th For EV Bus History!

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These are historic times for clean transport advocates in Los Angeles. Just last month, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti sent a letter to Metro CEO Philip A. Washington in support of transitioning L.A. Metro to 100% Zero-emissions electric buses by 2030. More recently, the Metro staff put together a plan to make this tranistion happen. Now it’s time for the Metro Board to make this an official policy.

On Thursday, July 27th, we’ll be out in full force for the next Metro Board Meeting. We’ll be holding a rally outside before the board meeting starts, and, with YOUR help, we’ll be packing the Metro Board Room full with people who want Electric buses afterwards. Every seat we fill brings us closer to transitioning Metro’s fleet of buses off of dirty natural gas and onto 100% zero emissions electric buses. Will you join us Thursday, July 27th, and help send us send a message to the Metro Board it’s time to seal the deal and commit to 100% zero emission electric buses TODAY?

Here are the details:
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KCRW says LA is Now Detroit of Electric Buses!

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LA’s NPR station, KCRW 89.9 FM today declared Los Angeles the Electric Bus Capitol of the USA in their piece today that began:

There’s a highly-charged competition going on in LA right now. And it’s between manufacturers of electric buses.

Transit agencies around the country are going electric. And here in LA, Metro has a goal of converting its bus fleet to 100 percent electric by 2030. The agency says it will spend around a hundred million dollars a year in contracts.

So under our noses a new industry is growing. There are at least ten companies in the Southland that are making and selling battery electric buses. The biggest is the Chinese-owned company BYD, which has a factory in Lancaster employing over 500 people, and Ebus in Downey. The Silicon Valley startup Proterra, with a new assembly plant in City of Industry, likens itself to the Tesla of electric buses.

But is it possible the capital of car culture is advancing the art of the humble bus – even as Metro currently grapples with a fall in bus ridership?

Read the whole super exciting story HERE.