Green buses get $101M federal boost

Fewer buses belching black smoke out their tailpipes seems like a winning idea to us and the federal government seems to agree. 

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced that transit companies across the United States will be able to compete for $101.4M in federal funding for innovative ideas that create green jobs, promote clean fuel, and lessen the country’s dependence on oil.

Last year’s 63 winning projects included purchasing hybrid, electric and natural gas buses in over 20 states as well as electric charging stations and energy efficient upgrades to transit facilities.

“This money supports President Obama’s plan to improve the environment and secure America’s energy future,” said Secretary LaHood.

“These investments will improve public transportation access for millions of Americans–all while reducing our dependence on oil, curbing air pollution, and easing pain at the gas pump.”

The winners will be chosen based on their ability to help communities achieve or maintain national air quality standards for ozone and carbon monoxide while creating jobs and supporting emerging clean fuel for buses. 

A portion of the grants will also be required to demonstrate the project’s return on the government’s investment.

The federal monies will be funded through the Federal Transit Administration’s FY 2011 Sustainability Initiative.

Patricia Marchetti, EarthTechling