When Peter Regelous starts up school bus no. 427 in Salem, one thing you won’t notice is any noise at all because the bus is completely soundproof.
It is one of 18 electric school buses that have been partially supported by funds from Portland General Electric over the course of the past three years, and this bus is one of them. According to Regelous, who has worked as a school bus driver for the Salem-Keizer School District for the past 14 years, the new vehicle has some distinct advantages over its conventional gas-powered counterparts.
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According to what Regelous said to KGW, “the fact that, if it’s a cold day, it doesn’t have to warm up.” “It’s really calm and unruffled.”
However, the advantages of riding an electric bus go much beyond the pleasure of driving it.
Regelous explained, “You’re driving the bus, and you have the impression that everything is clean.” You are not throwing anything into the atmosphere by any means. It’s an unusual experience for me because I’ve never driven an electric bus before, but at least you know that this vehicle doesn’t produce any harmful emissions.
Electric vehicles, such as the bus that operates in Salem, will play a pivotal role as the state works to achieve its aggressive climate objectives, which include slashing carbon dioxide emissions by almost half by the year 2035 and by 80 per cent by the year 2050.
According to the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, greenhouse gas emissions resulting from transportation account for around forty per cent of the state’s total carbon dioxide output. While emissions from certain other industries, such as housing and agriculture, have experienced slight reductions in total levels over the course of the past 15 years, emissions from vehicles have stubbornly remained the same.
Over the course of the past 15 years, greenhouse gas emissions have decreased throughout the majority of Oregon’s industries, with the exception of transportation, which has mostly maintained its previous level.
As part of the strategy to reduce emissions, the state is required to fully decarbonize its power production by the year 2040, as specified in House Bill 2021, which Governor Kate Brown signed into law the previous year.
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According to Maria Pope, President and CEO of Portland General Electric, electric vehicles will play a significant part in reducing emissions until the grid is providing electricity that is entirely derived from renewable sources.
She stated in a statement, “Electrifying transportation is a critical driver of decreasing greenhouse gas emissions and an important step toward attaining our goal of 100% clean energy for all Oregonians.” She was referring to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions caused by the combustion of fossil fuels. “Making the switch to fully electric school buses will benefit both students and communities,” as this statement says.
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