May 29, 2020

Baltimore Congressional Delegation Announces Nearly $3 Million for Zero-Emission Buses

Members of the Baltimore congressional delegation including U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Dutch Ruppersberger, John P. Sarbanes, and Kweisi Mfume (all D-Md.) announced $2,949,750 for the Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA) to expand Baltimore’s fleet of zero-emission buses. 

Funding comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) FY 2020 Low- or No-Emission Vehicle Program (Low-No). It will advance the statewide goal of transitioning to a clean bus fleet by purchasing three new zero-emission buses and charging equipment, which will be deployed in Baltimore City.

“MTA’s bus system provides critical transportation services for residents across the Baltimore region,” the lawmakers said. “These federal funds will advance the state’s ambitious goal of transitioning that system to a zero-emission fleet, starting in Baltimore. The successful completion of this plan will significantly improve air quality and public health statewide.”

In March, the Delegation wrote to Department of Transportation Secretary Chao, expressing strong support for the competitive proposal. 

“The Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA) is committed to upgrading 50 percent of its fleet to zero-emission technology by 2030 in order to meet Maryland’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said MTA Administrator Kevin Quinn. “This FTA grant funding of $2.9 million will provide MDOT MTA the opportunity to purchase, test and evaluate zero-emission technology to identify future specifications, system and infrastructure requirements, and training needs.” 

The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015 authorized $55 million per year through FY 2020 for the Low-No Program to support the transition of the nation’s transit fleet to the lowest polluting and most energy efficient transit vehicles. The Low-No Program makes competitive awards to State and local government authorities for the purchase or lease of zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, including acquisition, construction, and leasing of required supporting facilities. More information about this program may be found through DOT here