GreenPower Motor Co. hosted a successful groundbreaking ceremony for its upcoming manufacturing facility in Porterville, Calif.
During the event, representatives from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and California Climate Investments presented the City of Porterville with a giant check representing a grant for $9.5 million, which will bring 10 zero-emission battery-electric buses and supportive infrastructure to serve disadvantaged communities in the region. In addition to the buses, the project will include installation of charging stations and solar panels. Funding is from the California Climate Investments (CCI), the state’s climate change-fighting, cap-and-trade program.
Manufactured by GreenPower Motor Co. and expected to arrive by early 2018, the 10 new GreenPower EV350 40-foot zero-emission all-electric transit buses and the charging infrastructure will service all nine of the Porterville Transit routes in the disadvantaged communities of Porterville, East Porterville, Strathmore, and the Tule River Indian Reservation, all heavily affected by air pollution. GreenPower will build a manufacturing facility for all-electric buses and batteries, expected to open in 2018. Southern California Edison will support the installation of infrastructure and provide special rates for high-voltage bus charging.
“We are excited to be working with the City of Porterville on a system-wide deployment of our all-electric transit buses and charging infrastructure,” said Fraser Atkinson, chairman of GreenPower. “The Porterville project will serve as a model for other operators in the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District and across North America who are seeking to deploy not just a zero-emission vehicle, but a zero-emission solution.”
The $9.5 million award to the City of Porterville was one of only nine awards from the highly competitive Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Pilot Project solicitation. In addition to the grant amount, the project partners — GreenPower, San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, and Southern California Edison — will contribute more than $7 million in a combination of cash and in-kind matching funds.
The award is part of CCCI, a statewide program that puts billions of cap-and-trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities. The cap-and-trade program also creates a financial incentive for industries to invest in clean technologies and develop innovative ways to reduce pollution. California Climate Investments projects include affordable housing, renewable energy, public transportation, zero-emission vehicles, environmental restoration, more sustainable agriculture, recycling, and much more. At least 35% of these investments are made in disadvantaged and low-income communities.