US DoT announces $180m funding for low-emission transport

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The US Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has announced the availability of up to $180 million in competitive grant funds.

The Low-No Program helps eligible project sponsors purchase or lease low- or zero-emission vehicles and supports facilities that use advanced technologies to provide cleaner, more energy efficient transport operations in communities across the country. The funding opportunity will give prioity to applications with an environmental component as well as those which will support workforce development activities.

US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said: “The Biden Administration is committed to investing in clean transportation, and the Low or No Emission Program will put more American-made, energy-efficient buses into service across the country. This is an important step forward in ensuring that communities have access to high-quality, zero-emission transportation options.”

In support of the President’s Executive Order on Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis, the FTA says it is placing a priority on projects that will help improve air quality in areas which do not meet standards for certain pollutants. “Through the Low-No grant program, transit operators nationwide have the ability to replace aging buses near the end of their lifecycle with newer, cleaner models that are more efficient to operate and maintain,” said FTA Acting Administrator Nuria I. Fernandez.

To support American industry, FTA requires that all capital procurements meet FTA’s Buy America requirements which require that all iron, steel, and manufactured products be produced in the United States. To further support America’s recovery from Covid-19, all providers of public transport which are awarded funding through the Low-No Program must have fair and equitable labour protections in place as required by Federal public transportation law.