For immediate release November 14, 2011
Contact MK Campbell, CALSTART 626-744-5602
“American Fuel Cell Bus” Unveiled Today at SunLine Transit
Key milestone will enable transit districts to use Federal funds to buy zero emission bus
Thousand Palms, CA – SunLine Transit Agency today unveiled the “American Fuel Cell Bus,” one of the first production fuel cell buses to meet the federal government’s strict rules for U.S. content. The availability of this product will allow more transit properties to use federal funds to expand the zero emission bus market.
“This is a very important milestone in the evolution of commercially viable zero emission buses in the United States. This project shows that we can build buses in this country that are petroleum free, good for the environment, and create jobs,” said CALSTART President and CEO, John Boesel.
Nearly 60% of all 40-foot transit buses purchased in the United States rely on funding provided by the Federal Transit Administration. To qualify for federal funding, buses must meet the agency’s “Buy America” requirements.
This American Fuel Cell Bus was made possible because Federal funds were used to leverage private sector investment. Private and public funds for the development of the American Fuel Bus were provided by BAE Systems, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the California Air Resources Board, the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), ElDorado National-California and SunLine Transit Agency. CALSTART is serving as the agreement administrator for the federal funds used in the project.
This bus is the 7th generation hydrogen-fueled bus to be demonstrated and tested by SunLine Transit Agency, reflecting the leading role the transit property has played in advancing environmentally friendly bus technology. The bus was built at the ElDorado National manufacturing plant in Riverside, about a one hour drive from SunLine Transit Agency.
“SunLine’s leadership continues today here with the American Fuel Cell Bus unveiling, marking a significant milestone for the agency, and for the entire nation,” said Mikel Oglesby, General Manager, SunLine Transit Agency. He continued, “Commercialization of these advanced technologies is part of the agency’s ongoing strategy to lead this industry and serve our communities in the Coachella Valley and beyond. We are proud to be the first transit property to integrate this Buy America zero-emission bus into our fleet.”
“The team assembled to develop and deploy this bus really epitomizes the best and brightest in clean vehicle technology. From one of the world’s most innovative fleets at SunLine, to state-of-the-art work by bus builder, ElDorado National, and the fuel cell maker, Ballard Power Systems, to the integrator and hybrid-electric drive manufacturer, BAE Systems, this bus promises to help revolutionize the American market for zero-emissions technologies,” said John Boesel, President and CEO, CALSTART.
CALSTART, North America’s leading clean transportation technologies and solutions consortium, serves as a catalyst for creating jobs, cleaning the air, reducing fuel consumption and mitigating the threat of climate change. Since its inception in 1992, CALSTART has helped develop and manage more than $200 million in clean transportation technology programs. The organization is headquartered in Pasadena, and has offices in the San Francisco Bay Area and Denver. www.calstart.org