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Hirono Announces $5 Million in Federal Funding for EPA’s Clean School Bus Program in Hawaii

HONOLULU, HI – U.S. Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, announced that the Hawaii Department of Education will receive nearly $5 million to procure 25 new electric school buses. The grant is funded through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Clean School Bus Program, and will help 29 school districts across the Pacific Southwest purchase over 280 clean school buses that will accelerate the transition to zero emissions vehicles and produce cleaner air in and around schools and communities.

“Updating our school bus fleet with electric vehicles is critical as Hawaii moves to clean, renewable energy,” said Senator Hirono. “This funding, made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will bolster Hawaii’s transition to electric vehicles while reducing the health risks of traditional diesel-burning buses to our keiki. I’ll continue working to support projects like this that strengthen Hawaii’s leadership in the transition to a clean energy future.”

The Clean School Bus Program will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, save money for school districts, and produce cleaner air, and the 2022 Clean School Bus Rebates prioritize low-income, rural, and Tribal communities. In total, President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will be awarding nearly $95 million to this year’s grant recipients in American Samoa, Arizona, California, Hawaii, and Nevada.

As Chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Energy, Senator Hirono is working to expand the presence of electric vehicles and speed the transition to clean, renewable energy in Hawaii and across the country. In August, Senator Hirono helped pass the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), which includes $1 billion for EPA grants to states or municipalities to cover the incremental cost of purchasing heavy-duty vehicles, like school and transit buses and garbage trucks. Last year, she helped pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), which invests billions in climate mitigation, resilience, and safety, including a focus on cleaner and safer buses.