DeSantis Announces $68 Million for Electric Buses: ‘Lower Emissions’ and ‘Modern Standards’

August 29, 2022 Updated 10:33 PM ET

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TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that via funds from a legal settlement from Volkswagen, more than $68 million will be awarded for 227 electric transit buses in 13 counties statewide.

Counties included are Alachua, Broward, Duval, Escambia, Hillsborough, Leon, Marion, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Orange, Palm Beach, Pasco, and Pinellas.

“This funding will help lower emissions while also bringing our transit bus fleets to more modern standards,” DeSantis said. “This is a win-win for air quality and advancing the state’s efforts to bolster growing electric vehicle usage.”

A press release said the money is a step towards the DeSantis Administration’s efforts to “modernize public transit and reduce air pollutants caused by diesel emissions.” The money comes through the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

The DEP is also giving grant money for sevens school districts to purchase 218 electric school buses. The counties receiving award money include Broward, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas, and Sarasota

“Introducing electric buses is an important and effective way to reduce harmful emissions, especially in highly populated areas where mobile sources are the largest sources of air pollution,” DeSantis’ office said. “As more and more electric vehicles are deployed, emissions of air pollutants will be reduced, which will continue to improve Florida’s air quality.”

“Florida continues to be a national leader in air quality and is proud to be the most populous state in the nation to have met all of EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards,” DEP Secretary Shawn Hamilton said. “Through collaboration with partner agencies and the private sector, we are able to implement projects to protect air quality and support the needs of our communities.”

Florida received $166 million from a Volkswagen settlement and the DEP’s Florida Beneficiary Mitigation Plan outlines how the state will spend those funds.

Through those funds, the DEP has awarded grants for 150 electric vehicle charging stations along the highway system and several other grants to reduce emissions near ports.

Read here for more on the Mitigation Plan.

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