FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 10, 2024
Contact: Kia Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org
Zainab Chaudary, email@example.com
Mothers Out Front Celebrates Historic Electric School Bus Grants
School Districts in MOF’s CA, CO, MA, NY and VA Organizing States Received Part of $1 Billion EPA Grant Towards 2700 New Buses Nationwide
Fairfax, VA — This week, the U.S. EPA announced the winners of the Clean School Bus Program 2023 Grants, totalling $965 million. School districts in MOF’s organizing states – CA, CO, MA, NY, and VA – are among 67 winning applicants across 37 states receiving grant funding to replace aging diesel buses with clean energy alternatives, making vital public transportation for our kids safer and healthier.
“MOF is so proud to have been one of the many organizations and individuals working together to promote the transition to electric school buses in our country,” said Mothers Out Front’s Executive Director, Beth Shipp. “Thanks to the dedication of moms in our organizing states, school districts in CA, CO, MA, NY, and VA will be receiving a large percentage of the total 2,700 buses being delivered as a result of the most recent round of EPA Clean School Bus Program grant funding, leading to healthier kids, families, and neighborhoods.”
For the states MOF organizes in, the grant is the fruition of years of lobbying for clean energy alternatives. One example: in Fairfax County, VA – where Mothers Out Front has been working closely with the FCPS school board since 2019 to create the goal of transitioning to electric school buses by 2035 – the public school district was selected to receive $16,590,000 to purchase 42 electric school buses. This grant will help bring them a step closer to ensuring a clean ride for all kids who use school buses in Fairfax, which maintains the second-largest school bus fleet in the country.
“Diesel school buses pose numerous health risks for children and drivers, including heart and lung illnesses, chronic conditions like asthma, and even cancer,” said Bobby Monacella, Mothers Out Front’s Senior Campaigner for Northern VA. “We’re so grateful to Fairfax County Public Schools for making the transition to electric school buses a priority and committing to electrify the 1,650-bus fleet by 2035. Every electric school bus we add means less harmful pollution for our kids, our drivers, and our community.”
The EPA Clean School Bus Program (CSBP) was created by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law of 2021, and will distribute $5 billion over 5 years for clean school buses through grants and rebates. The program prioritizes funding for low-income, rural, and Tribal school districts. EPA opened $400 million in grant funding in April 2023, and doubled the funding it awarded this January to $965 million after receiving $2 billion in grant proposals, overwhelmingly requesting electric school buses.
Mothers Out Front is a member-led climate justice organization. We are mothers, sisters, aunts, grandmothers and other caregivers coming together to make climate justice a priority issue that our decision-makers can no longer ignore. We are building a powerful grassroots movement to ensure a swift, complete, and just transition away from fossil fuels and toward a clean and renewable energy future where our children and families can thrive, not just survive.