SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (KION-TV)- On Thursday, Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District’s (METRO) Board of Directors unanimously voted to purchase 57 hydrogen-powered, fuel cell electric buses.
These new buses will replace aging diesel and compressed natural gas buses. This will convert 59% of METRO's fleet to zero-emission to eventually reach the goal of a zero-emission bus fleet.
This single purchase will increase the percentage of zero-emission buses from 10% to over 69%. The hope is to reduce emissions by 1.2 million MTCO2e.
“METRO has set an aggressive goal to be 100% emissions-free by 2037,” said METRO CEO/General Manager Michael Tree. “The purchase of these buses is a vital piece of our climate action plan to meet the state of California’s clean energy mandates.”
METRO will also construct a hydrogen fueling station to support the new fleet.
"The FCEB procurement is made possible, in part, through $20.4 million in grant funding from the Federal Transit Administration’s FY23 Bus and Bus Facilities program and a $38.6 million award from the California State Transportation Agency’s Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program (TIRCP)," said METRO. "METRO has also applied for $27 million from the California Air Resources Board’s Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust, which is administered by the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District."