The Journal Gazette
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Buzz About Electric Bus
Environmental Advocates Make Tour Stop in City
June 19, 2017
By Frank Gray
A partnership of environmental groups brought an electric school bus to Fort Wayne on Tuesday as part of a four-state tour advocating for electric vehicles.
There are only about 100 electric school buses on the road today, and they cost about $300,000 each, three times what a regular school bus costs. But as the buses become more common, the price is expected to come down, said Susan Mudd, senior policy advocate for the Environmental Law and Policy Center.
Indiana is getting $41 million from a settlement with Volkswagen for cheating on emission tests, and the center wants the state to use that money to subsidize the cost of electric school buses. The center also hopes that electric utilities will help subsidize the cost of the buses.
While advocates say electric school buses will keep children from being exposed to diesel fumes, they also point out that electric buses can save between $5,000 and $12,000 a year each in fuel and maintenance costs.
The buses also accelerate better and are quieter, which means children on the bus are also quieter, Mudd said.
An electric bus can get 60 to 80 miles per charge, Mudd said, meaning one can make a day’s run on one charge, or that they can be recharged during the school day if a bus route is longer.