First Student's blueprint for electrifying 30,000 school buses by 2035

First Student’s blueprint for electrifying 30,000 school buses by 2035

We discuss the timelines and complexities involved in school districts around the country transitioning to electric school buses.

First Student isn’t messing around when it comes to its ambitions for school bus electrification – 30,000 school buses by 2035. At first glance, it may seem a bit pie-in-the-sky, but Kevin Matthews, head of electrification at First Student, assures that school buses may be the area that makes the most sense when it comes to fleet electrification opportunities in the U.S.

“That number was not a ‘throw darts at a dart board approach.’ We also believe this [growth will be] a little bit shallower than a hockey stick, where when you get to around the year 2029 or 2030 we’ll see a real uptick in the percentage of buses that become electric,” Matthews says. “The yellow school bus has been the redheaded stepchild of the automotive industry for a long, long time. But as we transitioned to electrification, we’ve actually moved toward the tip of the spear.”

In this episode of The Amped EV Podcast, we discuss how mandates for electric school buses in various states line up with the natural replacement cycle of school buses, the dual approaches districts adopt in electrifying their fleets, and shed light on the timelines and complexities involved in transitioning to electric school buses.

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