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LA moves toward an electric future with 25 new electric buses from Proterra

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Commuters in Los Angeles are doing their part to reduce carbon emissions by taking public transportation, and now, their public transportation options are going greener still. This week, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) announced it would be receiving 25 electric buses from Proterra, the California-based company behind zero-emission transportation solutions. The delivery will be comprised of 35-foot Proterra Catalyst buses, and is expected to arrive in 2019. With the addition of these new vehicles, LA is coming closer to its goal of deploying an all-electric bus fleet by 2030.

“Our goal is a 100-percent electric bus fleet – it’s a quiet ride for our customers and cleaner air for our city,” said Seleta Reynolds, LADOT’s general manager. “We know we can’t achieve our vision without partners like Proterra, and we can’t wait to see these buses on the street.”

The 25 buses from Proterra will represent just a small fraction of LA’s entire bus fleet, which boasts 359 vehicles in total. But even this small change could have enormous implications for the time being. The Proterra Catalysts will replace the presently-used CNG buses, which are said to emit more than 7.8 million pounds of greenhouse gas every year. Moreover, the new buses are expected to save the city of LA over $11 million, as they need less energy to operate, and promise reduced maintenance costs.

Indeed, the entire city of LA and much of Southern California looks to be electrifying its public transportation. Both the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro) and Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA) have pledged to transform their fleets into fully electric entities over the next 15 years, which will involve swapping out over 2,500 buses. But when all is said and done, if all these vehicles do go electric, it’ll represent “one of the heaviest concentrations of electric buses in North America,” as per a Proterra press release.

“Los Angeles County is home to our manufacturing facility in the City of Industry, where we manufacture the Catalyst electric buses, so it is fitting that our buses will be deployed in nearby regions,” said Ryan Popple, CEO of Proterra. “We’re proud to support transit agencies in meeting their climate action goals through the procurement of battery-electric buses. We applaud these agencies for their efforts to create an experience that supports healthy communities.”

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