In their attempt to fight climate change, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency announced that they will be setting aside $3 million for the purchase of electric school buses in Minnesota.
Currently, five school districts in Minnesota are using electric school buses as part of a pilot program. This policy change allows more school districts to join, providing up to $375,000 for the bus.
These funds come from a federal settlement in a 2016 case against carmaker Volkswagen, which violated the Clean Air Act. Minnesota is receiving a total of $47 million from the case.
The glaring issue with electric buses in Minnesota is our harsh winter temperatures. The Associated Press reports that cold temperatures knock off roughly 100 miles of battery capacity from the expected 282-mile range of new electric buses.
As it goes with batteries, that capacity will pretty rapidly deplete over the years. Despite this, Minnesota will be pushing for an all-electric bus fleet to meet its 2040 deadline to cut emissions.