The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is awarding more than $68 million that will secure 227 electric transit buses in 13 counties statewide that will replace existing diesel transit buses in Alachua, Broward, Duval, Escambia, Hillsborough, Leon, Marion, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Orange, Palm Beach, Pasco, and Pinellas counties.
This will be done with funds from the Volkswagen settlement. In October 2016, Volkswagen (VW) settled with the U.S. government resolving claims that it violated the Clean Air Act by selling diesel vehicles that violated the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) mobile source emission standards.
Of the nearly $3 billion in the settlement, Florida’s share is more than $166 million, or 5.68% of the overall Mitigation Trust Fund.
In addition to today’s announced electric transit bus grant awards, DEP has also awarded grants to seven school districts to purchase a total of 218 electric school buses in Broward, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas, and Sarasota counties. Introducing electric buses is an important and effective way to reduce harmful emissions, especially in highly populated areas where mobile sources are the largest sources of air pollution. As more and more electric vehicles are deployed, emissions of air pollutants will be reduced, which will continue to improve Florida’s air quality.
“This funding will help lower emissions while also bringing our transit bus fleets to more modern standards,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “This is a win-win for air quality and advancing the state’s efforts to bolster growing electric vehicle usage.”