TRENTON– Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen) today joined transit advocates and environmentalists in urging New Jersey Transit to expedite conversion to an electric bus fleet.
“Cutting vehicle emissions is critical to the fight against climate change,” said Senator Weinberg. “NJ Transit should be in the forefront of the conversion to a zero-emission electric bus fleet that is a priority for forward-looking mass transit agencies across the country.”
Senator Weinberg issued her statement in the wake of a press conference that brought together experts from the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, Clean Water Action, Environment New Jersey, ChargEVC, the League of Conservation Voters and the New Jersey Work Environment Council to urge NJ Transit to make electrification of its bus fleet a top priority.
The Los Angeles Department of Transportation has already committed to an all-electric bus fleet by 2030, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency by 2035, and both New York City’s Metropolitan Transit Agency (MTA) and Seattle’s Kings County Metro system have set a 2040 target for full electrification.
“NJ Transit should certainly be able to match the MTA’s 2040 target, but if we’re going to do so, we need to make an increased commitment to electric bus purchases in our next Bus Fleet Plan for 2021 to 2027. This is a critical environmental health issue, particularly in our cities,” Senator Weinberg said.
While Los Angeles and Seattle have already announced they will only purchase electric buses by 2025, NJ Transit’s only commitment so far is to purchase eight electric buses for Camden, with the cost paid for out of the Volkswagen settlement money.
Senator Weinberg, who co-chairs a bistate working group advising on the new Port Authority Bus Terminal, noted that the conversion to an all-electric bus fleet by both the MTA and NJ Transit was a top priority of New York City’s elected Community Boards. Community groups in New Jersey’s largest cities have also made the reduction of diesel bus pollution a top priority.