Electric school buses to be rolled out for Westchester: online forum

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January 29, 2022

Westchester County Executive George Latimer, the County Office of Energy and Sustainability and the Westchester Chapters of mothers in front co-hosted a forum on electric school buses on January 27. Panelists shared resources to help schools transition from fossil-fuel buses to zero-emission electric fleets.

“My administration has made it a priority to not only focus on green initiatives that we can control immediately at the county level,” said County Executive Latimer, “but also to work with key local stakeholders to provide information, know-how and support for other Westchester leaders so they can follow the same steps We only have one planet and it will take collective action to save it.

In addition to the County Executive, opening remarks were made by State Senator Pete Harckham and State Assemblyman Thomas Abinanti. Abinanti was instrumental in securing state grant funds for the first electric school bus for Tarrytown/Sleepy Hollow schools, which is expected to enter service this year.

Mothers Out Front is a national grassroots organization working towards a just transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Westchester chapters have advocated for electric school buses because of their environmental and health benefits.

Mothers Out Front volunteer Megan Dyer said, “When our members learned that our school bus emissions accounted for a quarter of the greenhouse gas emissions from transportation in the United States, we realized we could help. mitigate the climate crisis for our children. Transitioning to electricity would have a massive positive impact on climate, air quality and school cost savings. »

Panelists included White Plains Superintendent Joseph Ricca and Transportation Supervisor Sergio Alfonso who discussed their district’s electric bus pilot program. Croton-Harmon Deputy Superintendent Denise Harrington-Cohen shared that district’s process for receiving state funding. Discussions on resources and incentives were: CALSTART Northeast Regional Director Benjamin Mandel on behalf of NYSERDA’s program; director of e-mobility and engineering for the New York Power Authority John Markowitz; and director of e-mobility and demonstrations for Con Edison Raghusimha Sunhakara. Croton 100 volunteer manager Patty Buchanan shared a tool to calculate total cost of ownership.

For a recording of the event, visit https://www.mothersoutfront.org/lets-go-electric.

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