WASHINGTON, D.C., May 19, 2021 – Today Reps. Rick Larsen (WA-02), Julia Brownley (CA-26) and Derek Kilmer (WA-06) introduced legislation to boost the use of electric buses in local transit fleets to combat climate change and keep people and the economy moving. The Generating Reduced Emissions by Electrifying New Buses (GREEN Buses) Act amends the Federal Transit Administration’s Low or No (Low-No) Emission Vehicle Program to require the deployment of electric buses by organizations engaged in public transportation.
Greening the U.S. transportation system is a key step toward reducing public transit systems’ carbon footprint and combating climate change. Nationwide, buses provide more than 51 percent of all public transit trips annually, including over 85 percent of total annual public transit trips in Washington state. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the transportation sector accounted for 29 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. in 2019.
The GREEN Buses Act introduced by Larsen helps local transit agencies replace aging diesel buses with more efficient electric buses, which emit roughly 50 percent less carbon than the average diesel bus.
“As someone who uses public transportation every day, I understand the importance of safe, efficient and affordable public transit systems, especially buses, to hardworking Washingtonians,” said Larsen, Co-Chair of the Congressional Bus Caucus. “Local transit agencies like Everett Transit and the Whatcom Transportation Authority in my district are expanding electric bus fleets to keep people moving while reducing maintenance costs, lowering energy consumption and reducing their carbon footprint. I will continue to champion a bold, FDR-like investment in electric buses and the overall transit system to create well-paying jobs, drive economic recovery and build a cleaner and greener transportation network.”
“As a member of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I strongly believe that Congress must take all necessary steps to ensure our nation moves in the right direction to address climate change, including in the transit sector,” said Brownley. “We should also help transit agencies that have already set ambitious zero-emission targets and incentivize others to follow suit by ramping up federal investments in zero-emission buses. I look forward to working with Congressman Larsen to ensure the next surface transportation bill includes these provisions.”
“We know that investing in a clean energy transportation economy can create green jobs and help our environment,” said Kilmer. “That’s why I’m proud to support the effort to develop and deploy more electric buses in our region and our country, as quickly as possible.”
For text of the GREEN Buses Act introduced by Larsen and others, click here.
Content Source: Representative Rick Larsen News Brief