New York is set to be the first state in the Nation to implement an all-electric mandate for new school buses sold beginning in 2027, with all school buses electric-powered by 2035. This week, Governor Kathy Hochul announced the release of $100 million for electric school buses and charging infrastructure as part of the state’s School Bus Incentive Program.
“New York State is empowering school districts to embrace zero-emission school buses which will provide our leaders of tomorrow with healthy and clean transportation today,” said Hochul. “Ensuring electric school buses are at the forefront of student transport is a critical health investment and demonstrates the benefits of clean energy while reducing harmful emissions to improve air quality and protect our precious environment.”
Not everyone is excited about the transition. School districts and transportation providers have expressed concerns over the cost of the 2027 all-electric mandate.
“Each electric school bus costs approximately $350,000 and there are 45,000 school buses statewide,” said State Assembly Republican Leader Will Barclay. “The cost to replace diesel school buses with electric school buses could be well over $11 billion on the backs of taxpayers.”
The $100 million is being made available through the $4.2 billion Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act of 2022. These funds are being used to support the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent by 2050 and New York State’s requirements that all school buses in New York State be zero-emission by 2035.