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Updated: Dominion Energy Releases More Details on Electric School Bus Plans

Updated 3 p.m. — Includes information from FCPS about the school buses.

Eight electric school buses are set to roll into Fairfax County before the end of the year.

Dominion Energy announced today (Thursday) that Thomas Built Buses was selected in December as the vendor for the 50 buses for the first phase of the project.

Last year, Dominion Energy unveiled its initiative to bring 50 school buses to 16 counties and cities to replace diesel-powered buses by the end of 2020.

Fairfax County will be a part of the first batch of electric school buses Dominion Energy is working to add across Virginia.

“This is an innovative, sustainable solution that will help the environment, protect children’s health, make the electric grid stronger, and free up money for our schools,” Dominion Energy Chairman, President and CEO Thomas Farrell, II, said in the press release.

Fairfax County, which currently has a fleet of 1,625 diesel-fueled buses, will get eight electric ones, with Dominion Energy covering the difference in cost between the electric and diesel buses, according to Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS).

“Dominion will also subsidize the cost of [the] necessary charging infrastructure,” FCPS said.

More from the press release:

The buses also provide environmental and health benefits through reduced emissions and reduce operation and maintenance costs for schools by up to 60 percent.

Phase two of the project, with state approval, would expand the program to bring at least 1,000 additional electric school buses online by 2025. Once phase two is fully implemented, the buses’ batteries could provide enough energy to power more than 10,000 homes.

Phase three would set the goal to have 50 percent of all diesel bus replacements in Dominion Energy’s footprint be electric by 2025 and 100 percent by 2030.

“Adding electric school buses in our fleet is consistent with the environmental focus of Fairfax County and the school division,” FCPS Superintendent Scott Brabrand said in the FCPS press release. “Before this new partnership, the availability of electric school buses was very limited and cost was prohibitive for school divisions. This exciting new Dominion Energy initiative is moving us forward and is making electric school buses a reality.”

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