Time For Our Yellow Buses To Go Green
Since Ottawa City Council declared a Climate Emergency in Ottawa on April 24 2019, the effects of the climate crisis have been undeniable right here in Ottawa, with floods, tornadoes and the recent devastating derecho.
Transportation in Ottawa accounts for 42% of all greenhouse gas emissions, yet Canada generates approximately 82% of its electricity from zero emission power sources. Shifting vehicles away from fossil fuel engines towards zero emission alternatives presents a critical opportunity for significant greenhouse gas emission reductions, which can help to mitigate climate change and its extreme weather events.
80,000 students take the bus to and from school every day in Ottawa. Across the province, Ontario’s 20,000+ school buses make up Canada’s largest fleet, with monumental potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Despite this, Ontario’s Electric School Bus Pilot program was cancelled in 2018 when the Progressive Conservatives took power. Shockingly, only 20 school buses in the province are currently electric. We can do better.
Transitioning one school bus to electric can save around 20 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year, meaning that electrifying the entire Ontario fleet would eradicate more than 360,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every single year.