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Senator Markey, Massachusetts Colleagues Celebrate $189 Million in Federal Funding to Support Transition to Zero- and Low-Emission Bus Fleet

Government and Politics

August 16, 2022


Boston (August 16, 2022) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) led members of the Massachusetts Congressional Delegation today in celebrating the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) announcement that it will award $189 million in federal transportation grants to finance capital projects and support the transition of Massachusetts transit authorities’ fleets to the lowest polluting and most energy efficient buses.

“These federal investments will help ensure that Massachusetts families have accessible, affordable, and efficient public transit fit for the 21st century,” said Senator Markey. “As transportation remains the top polluting sector in our Commonwealth, transitioning to a more efficient bus fleet is a critical step toward achieving the emissions reductions we need for a healthier, more livable future.”

“Congratulations to the five recipients for receiving these federal transportation grants and to Massachusetts for the second highest amount of funding in the country! These grants will help build the next generation of green public transit across our state by investing in electric and low-emissions buses that will make commutes more reliable and our air cleaner,” said Senator Elizabeth Warren.

“Reducing carbon emissions and transitioning to clean energy is critical to our fight against climate change,” said Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark. “By electrifying our public transportation system, we are improving the quality of our air, improving the health of our communities, and putting us on a path toward a greener future. I’m thrilled to see this funding come to Massachusetts.”

“The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority and the Berkshire Regional Transit Authority are committed to reducing pollution and ensuring greener fleets,” said Congressman Richard E. Neal, Chair of the House Committee on Ways and Means. “This funding will go a long way in assuring that they are able to fulfill their missions while ensuring that riders have safe, affordable, and reliable transportation.”

“Climate change remains one of the most existential threats to the future of our planet,” said Congressman James P. McGovern, Chair of the House Rules Committee. “By investing in zero- and low-emission bus fleets, Massachusetts affirms itself as a national leader in taking the bold and aggressive action necessary to address the damage caused by human action on our environment. By increasing transit energy efficiency, this funding reduces America’s dependency on Big Oil, contributing to the more sustainable and cleaner future our children deserve.”

“Now is the time for Massachusetts to make bold investments into cleaner, more sustainable transportation options. This funding for zero- and low-emission buses will help to improve air quality while giving riders more reliability,” said Congressman Seth Moulton. “This is an important step on the way to rebuilding the modern infrastructure that our state deserves.”

“I’m thrilled to see this transformative investment in the Commonwealth’s transition to low- and zero-emission transportation options,” said Congresswoman Lori Trahan. “Thanks to this federal funding, Massachusetts will continue our leadership in clean, modern, and affordable transit that every resident can afford.”

“Climate change is an existential threat and it’s imperative that we advance policies and investments to confront it head on,” said Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley. “With communities of color bearing the disparate brunt of both environmental and transit injustice, electrifying our bus fleets in the Massachusetts 7th will be a necessary step towards making our transit systems more sustainable and accessible. I’m glad to see this money come to Massachusetts and I am grateful to Senator Markey and our delegation colleagues for their partnership.”

The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) will receive a grant from FTA’s Buses and Bus Facilities Competitive Program to finance buses and bus facilities capital projects. The Berkshire Regional Transit Authority (BRTA), the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SRTA), and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) will each receive a grant from FTA’s Low or No Emissions Vehicle Program to support their efforts in purchasing and leasing zero-emission and low-emission transit buses.

Specifically, these grants would provide:

    -$54,000,000 to the PVTA to purchase battery-electric buses, expanded the bus bay of the UMass Bus Maintenance Facility, and support transit electrification efforts along Cottage Street.
    -$2,457,328 to the BRTA for replacement vehicles and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems.
    -$4,143,750 to MassDOT to facilitate the commonwealth’s transition to zero- and low-emission transit systems.
    -$12,240,000 to the SRTA to replace buses along fixed routes with hybrid electric transit vehicles.
    -$116,000,000 to the MBTA for Phase I of its transition to a battery-electric bus fleet.

In June, Senator Markey joined his colleagues Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark (MA-05), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) in sending a letter to FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez in support of the MBTA’s application to the Low or No Emissions Vehicle Program and Bus and Bus Facilities Program.