El MONTE, CA – El Monte Union High School District received the first two of 11 electric buses on July 21 and two more on July 22 as a part of the District’s participation in the Clean Mobility in Schools Pilot Project, made possible by the $9.8 million grant awarded by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
This new fleet of electric buses is a part of the District’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint, creating a healthier environment for students, families and staff. El Monte Union’s participation in the Clean Mobility in Schools Pilot Project promotes the use of zero-emission vehicles and clean transportation options for its school community, thanks to the CARB grant.
“Our students deserve transportation to school in buses that are not only safe but also work to eliminate poor air quality in their hometown, and so El Monte Union is excited to see the first buses being delivered because it is the start of new era of transportation for our students,” Facility & Energy Manager Lena Luna said.
The purpose of the new buses will be to transport students using state-of-the-art vehicles with the most current safety features that are not reliant on diesel or gasoline. These buses will reduce the District’s carbon footprint and help to improve the air quality of the cities EMUHSD services, including El Monte, South El Monte and Rosemead.
Brandon Bluhm, Director of New School Bus Sales at A-Z Bus Sales, Inc., said that his company is 100% employee-owned and the leading distributor of alternative fuel and zero emissions school buses in California. Bluhm explained that electric school buses can save districts up to 80% in fuel costs and up to 50% in maintenance costs over traditional diesel-powered vehicles.
“We are proud to be leading the way for alternative fuel and zero emissions bus sales in the state, and it continues to be a great experience partnering with the El Monte Union High School District,” Bluhm said. “We expect that the rest of the buses will be delivered over the next few months.”
The District’s project will also add three electric motor pool vehicles, five energy storage systems and charging hardware to support electric vehicles. The District has already received 11 all electric 2021 Gem Polaris utility maintenance carts.
The active transportation plan is another component of this project and complements the electrification of the school buses and maintenance vehicles by generating project ideas that focus on how students and staff get to school and also aims to improve school transportation safety and air quality. The plan takes a comprehensive look at key issues identified by each school community to understand students’ trip from home to school at the community level.
“El Monte Union is excited to receive the first of our electric school bus fleet, marking the beginning of a cleaner and brighter future for our students, staff and school community,” Superintendent Dr. Edward Zuniga said. “Thank you to CARB and all of our partners for helping us to make this transition from gasoline to electric a reality and thank you to our staff who continue to work tirelessly in the best interest of our students and families.”
For more information regarding the Clean Mobility in Schools Pilot Project and the Active Transportation Plan, please visit https://emuhsdmobility.com.