Virginia Utility Wants All School Buses to be Electric by 2030
An experiment is set to soon take place for a swathe of Virginia school students, with the coming week seeing several school districts across Northern and Central Virginia, as well as Hampton Roads likely to apply for electric bus usage by the end of 2020. The application would mean up to 50 electric buses would be in use by the end of next year, and the program would see the schools partner with Dominion Energy to push the project forward.
“The program would be the largest fleet of its kind in the United States,the company said, and the first step in the utility’s three-part plan to put 1,000 electric school buses on state roads by 2025.
Manufacturers soon will be allowed to begin bidding on the contract.
Mark Webb, senior vice president and chief innovation officer for Dominion, said the company is pursuing the project because of its environmental and health benefits. Replacing diesel buses with electric ones will reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, he said, and the buses will save school districts money in gas and maintenance costs. An added benefit: They will have seat belts.” (Washington Post)
Dominion has reasons for such a project as well; 1,000 buses will apparently help serve the grid, providing enough juice to run nearly 10,000 homes for five hours, according to Dominion. This is due to the vehicles being housed in a singular location and not in use for much of the day. The company believes that because the vehicles are on such a regular schedule, they’ll be able to use the buses as a reliable and regular source of power once up and running.
“Not only does [the project] improve our numbers, but it solves other problems as well — it has significant benefit to the rest of society. We look for things that are win-win-wins, and this is one.”