The Moreno Valley Unified School District (MVUSD) has approved a project from InCharge Energy, Creative Bus Sales and IC Bus to deploy 42 electric school buses and an electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure to support the new fleet. The electric buses – expected to be the largest operating electrified school bus fleet in California – will serve more than 31,000 students from 42 schools in this Southern California community.
InCharge Energy says the quieter electric buses will reduce noise pollution and provide a safer transportation option for all students, especially for special needs and medically fragile students. The company says the vehicles drive more smoothly for students due to its continuous drivetrain and quiet operation, and bus drivers can better serve their passengers in the virtually silent vehicles. The company adds the new electric buses will reduce more than 1.2 million pounds in carbon emissions across the Moreno Valley, which has an “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” rating on the Air Quality Index. Finally, the school district expects 75% cost savings on bus maintenance, fuel and operations, allowing more funding to go to classrooms.
This initiative represents the largest electric school bus purchase in California, InCharge Energy says. IC Bus and Creative Bus Sales will supply the school district with 42-passenger IC electric buses while InCharge Energy will install and maintain 43 ABB TERRA 24 kW DC fast chargers. InCharge Energy will begin work on the EV charging infrastructure in April. The school district expects to be driving students in all 42 buses by the start of the new school year.
InCharge Energy worked closely with MVUSD and Creative Bus Sales to generate grants and incentives from the federal government, the state of California and Southern California Edison, which bolstered the school district’s commitment to this electrification project. The two companies secured vouchers from California’s Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Program (HVIP) for vehicles, hardware and installation. The school district also received funds from California’s Carl Moyer program and partnered with the South Coast Air Quality Management District for a US EPA Airshed Grant. Southern California Edison will provide funding support from its Charge Ready program for necessary utility upgrades, EV chargers and their installation.