The Lion Electric Company, a leading manufacturer of all-electric medium and heavy-duty vehicles, congratulated the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the announcement of the first round of awards for its highly successful Clean School Bus Program.
“It is fantastic to see these funds being awarded and we are excited to see the massive interest in clean school buses across all 50 states. Lion would like to congratulate the EPA along with the awardees, who will soon benefit from the adoption of zero-emission school buses,” said Marc Bedard, CEO-Founder of Lion Electric. “Lion saw the opportunity for all-electric school buses in the market over a decade ago when we began developing our technology and started the zero-emission school bus revolution, and today we are seeing the results in large-scale adoption, for the benefit of the health of our children, our communities and the environment.”
The momentum in all-electric school buses is evidenced by the EPA grant awards, with 90% of awarded applications going to electric school buses. This will result in the deployment of thousands of all-electric buses throughout the U.S.
Thanks to the resounding interest in this year’s initial tranche of $500 million, with around 2,000 applications amounting to nearly $4 billion, for a total of over 12,000 buses, the EPA increased the number of funding awards that were announced to $965 million. Furthermore, an additional $1 billion in funding will be available for the fiscal year 2023.
Lion Electric is the leader in all-electric school buses and has been at the forefront of the market, putting its first vehicles on the road in 2016, all of which are designed from the ground-up to be electric. Since, Lion has deployed over 700 all-electric vehicles throughout North America, which have covered over 10 million miles in real-world operating conditions.
Lion’s dedicated team of grant specialists is well-positioned to help districts and operators apply and secure future funding opportunities and ensure they meet the proper deadlines for Clean School Bus Program awardees. Those selected for this initial round of EPA funding are required to receive new buses, install eligible charging infrastructure, replace old buses and submit close-out forms by October 2024.
Lion saw huge interest in the program from districts and operators across the country and was able to assist customers in securing Clean School Bus Program funding to deploy “Made in America” buses to be built at its Joliet, Illinois manufacturing facility. This facility, which has a planned annual production capacity of up to 20,000 vehicles once ramp-up is complete, will be the largest dedicated medium and heavy-duty electric vehicle manufacturing plant in the U.S. Deploying zero-emission school buses brings healthier commutes to students while preventing exposure to hazardous particulate emissions from diesel engines, especially in underserved communities, which have historically had disproportionately poor air quality.