Canada Sets Sights on Electrifying Public Transit System


Infrastructure and Communities Minister Catherine McKenna and the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry Francois-Philippe Champagne say the Canadian government is providing $2.75 billion in funding over five years -starting this year – to enhance public transit systems and switch them to cleaner electrical power – including supporting the purchase of zero-emission public transit and school buses. 

The funding is part of an eight-year, $14.9 billion public transit investment recently outlined by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and will also support municipalities, transit authorities and school boards with transition planning. The funding also aims to help purchase 5,000 zero-emission buses over the next five years.  

Infrastructure Canada will ensure coordination between this investment and the Canada Infrastructure Bank commitment to invest $1.5 billion in zero-emission buses and associated infrastructure as part of its three year Growth Plan. To date, Infrastructure Canada’s funding programs have already supported the purchase of over 300 new zero-emission buses.

“The government is committed to ensuring that Canadian businesses have the tools, support and conditions to become players in a growing economic sector,” says Champagne. “With this investment, the government is helping these Canadian manufacturers address a growing need here at home to successfully pivot to new, greener products.”

Since 2015, the government has approved $13.6 billion in funding towards more than 1,300 public transit projects across the country. These investments have helped build more than 240 km of new public transit subway and light rail line, create over 380 km of active transportation trails, bike and pedestrian lanes, and already supported the purchase of over 300 zero emission buses.

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