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Compressed natural gas buses have saved Los Angeles County an average of 47 cents per mile on fuel the past 15 years.
The Federal Transit Administration awarded the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority $10.5 million in grant funding for 30 “near-zero” emission buses for use in South Bay and Gateway Cities jurisdictions served by Southern California's largest transit agency.
A total of 66 contracted diesel buses around Los Angeles are at the end of their useful life, and since 1992, Metro has worked to replace them with about 2,500 ultra-clean, compressed natural gas buses.
CNG buses are about 1,000 times cleaner than their diesel predecessors from the 1980s and ’90s, and the city has saved 47 cents per mile on fuel the past 15 years.
“We are doubling down on our commitment to being the nation’s leading operator of compressed natural gas buses,” John Fasana, Metro board chair and Duarte city council member, said during Tuesday’s announcement. “We want to continue to provide our region with the air quality benefits that CNG fuel provides.”
Metro will spend $21 million in all to upgrade buses along seven routes while also establishing refueling facilities and a workplace development program for county bus maintenance in Carson.
Los Angeles County boasts the largest clean-air bus fleet in the U.S. with 40,000 riders a day and 6.8 million riders a year.
The new CNG buses will begin operating next year, and you can read more about them here .
Dave Nyczepir is a News Editor at Government Executive’s Route Fifty and is based in Washington D.C.