Government of Canada launches its zero-emission bus fund

Aug. 11, 2021
The C$2.75-billion fund is designed to help the transportation sector significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions by shifting vehicles away from fossil fuel engines.

The government of Canada officially launched its five-year, C$2.75-billion (US$2.19 billion) fund to help transportation service providers transition their fleets away from fossil-fueled engines and to zero-emission vehicles.

The Zero Emission Transit Fund is part of the federal government’s C$14.9-billion (US$11.9 billion) investment in public transit and is in addition to the Canada Infrastructure Bank’s planned investment of C$1.5 billion (US$1.19 billion) in zero-emission buses through its three-year Growth Plan.

“Ensuring that Canadians can enjoy cleaner air, quieter streets and a planet safe for our kids, while tackling climate change, creating good jobs and opportunities for Canadian manufacturers - that’s the goal of our investment in zero-emission buses across Canada,” said Canada’s Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Catherin McKenna.

Projects that are eligible to apply for funding include planning and design projects, as well as capital projects. Eligible recipients include provinces, territories, municipal or regional governments, transit agencies, public bodies, private-sector school bus operators and private accessible transit transportation providers.

The Canadian Urban Transit Research & Innovation Consortium (CUTRIC) applauded Infrastructure Canada’s launch of the program.

“Canada is on fire. The world is heating up. And people are anxious about their future and the survival of their children,” said CUTRIC President and CEO Josipa Petrunic. “This program is an absolutely necessary step in the right direction. We need to start launching technologies that save humanity from itself. This program will get clean technologies on the roads sooner rather than later and it should inspire a generation of innovators to come up with ideas for even lower-emissions mobility in the near future.”

CUTRIC, which is part of a partnership on zero-emission bus research and is leading a hydrogen fuel cell development project, among other efforts, explains zero-emissions projects “are as complex as they are transformative.”

“They not only require the purchasing of vehicles, but also charging infrastructure, feasibility studies, ongoing empirical analysis, and retrofitting of depot and storage facilities,” said the consortium. “A dedicated funding program specifically designed for zero emissions transit projects recognizes the unique nature of these ventures and is an important step towards building cleaner transit systems in a smart, deliberate approach.”

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Editor in Chief

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the magazine’s editorial direction and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.