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A zero-emissions electric school bus in Quebec
Public Transit
Apr 04, 2022

The CIB Achieves Financial Close on an Investment of $400 Million Towards Zero-Emission School Buses In Quebec

Investment supports the purchase of 3,500 school buses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and could serve as a model for other provinces

The Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) signed an agreement with the Bus Carriers Federation (Federation) where the CIB will invest up to $400 million to enable the purchase of 3,500 zero-emission school buses (ZEBs). This large-scale investment in zero-emission vehicles will substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions and demonstrates Quebec’s leadership in sustainable transit.

Investment details

The CIB’s long-term investment will cover the higher upfront capital costs of ZEBs compared to diesel buses, helping to accelerate the electrification of the school bus fleet. Financial savings are estimated to be substantial, as lifetime fueling and maintenance costs for ZEBs could be as much as 35 per cent lower than diesel buses.
The CIB’s financing will work in conjunction with funding provided by the Ministry of Transport of Quebec. All funding will be available for bus operators to make ZEB purchases.

Environmental benefits

Zero emission school buses are a sustainable alternative to traditional diesel buses and will help students travel to school in a more environmentally friendly and safe manner.
ZEBs are expected to have lower maintenance and fueling costs compared to equivalent greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting vehicles. A zero-emission electric school bus saves approximately 20 tonnes of GHGs annually compared to a diesel school bus and helps owners lower their carbon footprint. The shift of 3,500 diesel buses to ZEBs is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 59,000 tonnes per year.
The electrification of school buses is a key initiative to help the Province of Quebec’s goal of reducing GHG emissions by 65 per cent by 2030. Bus operators will be responsible for procurement, charging infrastructure and maintenance of vehicles.
The CIB’s investment is another important step towards achieving the Government of Canada’s goal of 5,000 ZEBs.

We are proud to collaborate with an innovative partner to provide Quebecers with greener and more sustainable transportation for students, parents and school staff for generations to come. With this investment, we are sending a clear signal to other potential partners across the country: we want to sign similar partnerships with you to make a difference in the quality of life for Canadians.

- Ehren Cory, CEO, Canada Infrastructure Bank

The Bus Carriers Federation is actively contributing to the shift to electric school buses. We are pleased to partner with the CIB, which will offer a financial product for the benefit of carrier members who are making this important shift for their businesses. Through this agreement, the Federation will support its members by accompanying them throughout the financing process with the CIB.

- Stéphane Lefebvre, Chairperson, Bus Carriers Federation

Quick Facts

  • The CIB’s $1.5 billion zero-emission bus initiative assists transit agencies and school bus operators to transition their fleets to modern, environmentally friendly vehicles.
  • The CIB seeks to invest up to $5 billion into public transit projects that are in the public interest and support Canadian sustainable economic growth.
  • All CIB investments are subject to approval of its Board of Directors.

Associated link

CIB Media
Media Team
Luc Lafrance
Bus Carriers Federation