Appalachian Power awards $2M in grants to 5 school systems in central, SWVA to purchase electric school buses

Education

An electric-powered school bus (Image courtesy of Appalachian Power).

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) – Appalachian Power is providing five school systems in central and southwest Virginia a cumulative total of $2 million in grants to purchase a total of nine energy-efficient buses.

Schools in Amherst, Campbell, Montgomery and Washington counties each received the grants to purchase two electric school buses. Bedford County Public Schools received funds to help with the purchase of one electric school bus.

Grant funds of $250,000 were awarded for each school bus, plus an additional $4,175 to help with the cost of charging equipment and installation.

In order to receive the funds, each school system had to agree to disable or scrap a conventional diesel bus and replace it with a new electric-powered bus.

About $300,000 in grant funds remains available for school systems in Appalachian Power’s service area in Virginia and West Virginia.

“This is an exciting time for schools. Electric school buses were more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly than traditional diesel buses, and we’re honored to partner with our communities on this project.”

Chris Beam, President & CEO of Appalachian Power

With electric school buses, children’s exposure to harmful diesel exhaust fumes and particles is highly reduced.

The buses run quieter and are less expensive to maintain due to their motors having fewer moving parts than internal combustion engines.

Electricity is also a less-expensive fuel than either gasoline or diesel.

The grant program is part of a settlement agreement between American Electric Power (AEP) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over Clean Air Act violations.

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