LOS ANGELES - The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority Monday deployed the first electric bus for the G Line, with 40 zero-emission buses planned to be added to the formerly named Orange Line by the end of the year.
"We're finally, after years and years and years of talking about it, we have zero-emission buses that will now be running on this line," Mayor Eric Garcetti said.
"We know zero-emission vehicles are more quiet, they obviously are a lot less polluting," he said. "And as we continue to make our energy production more and more green, that means that the environmental footprint and the global emissions of our transportation sector can help us drive a global Green New Deal that can help us save this planet and life on it as we know it."
Garcetti, who is also the chair of the Metro board, joined Councilman and Metro board member Paul Krekorian and Metro CEO Phillip Washington to introduce the 60-foot bus for the G Line, which runs across the San Fernando Valley. They spoke in front of the electric bus while it was docked in a charging station.
The G Line opened 15 years ago and runs 24/7, and about half of the 30,000 people who rode it every weekday prior to the COVID-19 pandemic have started to return, Garcetti said.
Metro is adding 100 zero-emission buses to its total fleet by the end of the year, and the goal is to have the entire Metro bus fleet converted to electric vehicles by 2030, Washington said.
The current G Line and other Metro buses are fueled by compressed natural gas.
Krekorian said the electric buses are quieter and will improve the quality of life for people who live along the G Line, and he said the buses are easier for operators to use, reducing tension and wear on their bodies.
"When you have a zero-emission bus that is powered with electricity that comes from what will be a zero-emission utility, you're making a dramatic difference for the future of the climate throughout our planet, so it's a huge accomplishment," Krekorian said.
The electric buses are manufactured by New Flyer and are charged at stations throughout the Metro system, according to Washington, who said Metro is making improvements to the G Line that will decrease the travel times by 20%.
"We are looking forward to electrifying this line," Washington said.