Transdev Canada is investing close to CAD$4.5 million in its fleet of electric school buses with the Quebec company Lion, thus becoming, with a total of 31 vehicles, the largest private operator of electric school buses in North America to date. This major investment is made possible by the Quebec government’s proactive support policy.
The entire new fleet will be gradually introduced on the school transport networks operated by Transdev from the start of the school year in September 2020, in the Estrie and Montérégie regions of Quebec. Transdev’s ambition is to electrify 100% of its fleet of electric school buses parked in its Quebec depots by 2025.
“We wanted to demonstrate a strong commitment regarding energy transition, and in particular to serve the younger generations who are the public transportation passengers of tomorrow. The crisis we are going through has only strengthened our conviction: we have a responsibility to make strong choices in this area. We have done so with two key partners: the Québec government, whose support is crucial to our electrification strategy, and Lion, a local Québec company with which we have been working for a long time,” said Arthur Nicolet, Chief Executive Officer of Transdev Canada.
By the end of 2019, Transdev already operated more than 800 electric buses worldwide and should have a fleet (operated and on order) of 1,200 electric buses (batteries, batteries and hydrogen fuel cells) by the end of the year.
Transdev has chosen to develop in Canada a specific energy transition plan for school transportation in Quebec, because of its dynamic local ecosystem and the fact that the energy produced locally is mostly hydraulic, and therefore among the cleanest in the world. The introduction of these vehicles promises to reduce pollution by 99% compared to thermal vehicles.
“This order for electric buses was planned before the health crisis. Despite the situation, we did not hesitate to complete this order with a Quebec partner because it is part of an ambitious development plan for our activities in Quebec. We are convinced of the major role we can play in all communities and firmly believe in the future of the sustainable mobility sector in the province.” said Marie-Hélène Cloutier, Executive Vice-President Quebec and Maritimes of Transdev Canada.
The operator and the manufacturer have been working together since 2016. Marc Bédard, President and Founder of The Lion Electric Co added “We have been happy to support Transdev in their commitment to sustainable mobility since 2016. With thirty one 100% electric LionC school buses in their fleet, Transdev’s green shift is certain to have a major impact on the environment and children’s health for years to come. We hope this transaction inspires everyone seeking an economic, sustainable and environmental transport solution to leverage the substantial benefits of electrification.”
This operation benefits from the Program to Support the Deployment of Electric School Buses in Québec, which is part of the Québec government’s 2015-2020 Transportation Electrification Action Plan.[source: Transdev Canada]