DETROIT (WXYZ) — Michigan students will soon get to ride on some of the first zero-emission electric school buses in the state.
DTE announced Thursday that its partnership with Ann Arbor and Roseville schools was selected by the state of Michigan to receive funding for six Thomas Built "Jouley" buses powered by Proterra, as well as equipment to charge them.
The Ann Arbor Public Schools will receive four buses and Roseville Community Schools will receive two buses.
DTE says it will work with both districts "to ensure the associated electric infrastructure is constructed to support the project." DTE also will partner with the schools to implement a vehicle-to-grid study, which will allow the utility to better understand the effects of battery storage technology.
"We're excited to help bring clean electric transportation to thousands of Michiganstudents," said Trevor F. Lauer, president and chief operating officer, DTE Electric. "This partnership and grant fits well with our commitment to advancing both STEM education and Michigan's clean energy future."
DTE has also joined with the Michigan Association of School Transportation to develop educational programs around the new buses.
Students will see real-world applications of new innovations, such as the zero-emission electric technologies the buses employ, as part of their focus in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
"This is a progressive step forward for our schools and aligns nicely with our existing sustainability goals in the Ann Arbor community," said Marios Demetrious, assistant superintendent, Ann Arbor Public Schools. "We are thrilled to lead Michigan in the deployment of the latest transit technology for schools."
"We look forward to deploying these electric buses in our district," said John Kment, superintendent, Roseville Community Schools. "Not only will they help us reduce our carbon footprint, but they will also serve as great educational opportunities for our students. Our educators will use them to lead discussions on how we can all take steps to integrate cleaner energy into our daily lives."
Click here for details on DTE's clean energy initiative.