Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced which local school districts across the nation, including Arizona, are the winners of a rebate lottery Clean School Bus Program to transition from diesel to electric school buses. This is part of the $5 billion now available as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for clean school buses over the next five years (FY 2022-2026) to replace existing school buses with zero-emission and low-emission models, prioritizing funding for low-income, rural, and Tribal school districts.
The Arizona school district winners include:
• Cedar Unified District
• Isaac Elementary District
• Littlefield Unified District
• Mesa Unified District
• Mohave Valley Elementary District
• Paloma School District
• Red Mesa Unified District
• Somerton Elementary District
This is a big win for Arizona; a total of $11,415,000 will go towards 52 electric school buses.
“From Mohave Valley to Somerton, school districts in Arizona recognize that electric school buses protect students’ health and save school districts money. These school districts in Arizona, which serve mainly underserved communities, are taking advantage of federal funding to purchase electric buses that are benefiting their students and their budgets,” said Diane E. Brown, Executive Director of the Arizona PIRG Education Fund.
These school buses will have a great impact on our communities due to the fact that in Arizona, over 130,000 of our children and 545,000 adults have asthma. And this number increases every year due to the air quality. According to the recent American Lung Association’s ‘State of the Air 2022’ report, poor air quality contributes to a wide range of negative health impacts, including childhood asthma attacks, impaired lung function and development, lung cancer, heart attacks, strokes, and premature deaths. And some of the cities in our state rank among the most polluted ones.