The federal government has awarded $4.4 million to bus manufacturer Blue Bird Corp. to develop a zero-emissions, electric powered school bus that could fund school districts through “Vehicle-to-Grid” technology. The award stipulates that the electric bus has to be an affordable solution for school districts. TransPower President and CEO Michael Simon stated that this electric bus solution could also create additional jobs throughout the country by manufacturing parts for this school bus.
For Blue Bird, the electric-powered bus is not unfamiliar territory. They were the first to market an electric school bus in 1994. They have been closely monitoring this technology ever since.
The U.S. Department of Energy announced last year that they would give $15 million to organizations to accelerate the adoption of advanced and alternative fuel vehicles. Blue Bird received the largest chunk of that money. The government has stated that Blue Bird has a solid reputation and already has extensive knowledge of this type of vehicle.
The new Blue Bird school bus should roll out in 2019.