Going Green By Going Yellow This Earth Day

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The industry is highlighting the environmental benefits of jumping on the school bus on the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.

Whether its the “greener” engines that sit beneath the hood of the newest school buses or the reduction in emissions that comes with either retrofits or parents parking their cars and sending their children to school on the bus, the industry as a whole is taking a moment to highlight the eco-friendly trends that have been gaining greater momentum in the last few years.

Contractor FirstGroup America was quick to point out some numbers to back up it the title of its recent press release, “This Earth Day, Save the Environment! Ride a Bus!” The release cites data from the American School Bus Council and the American Association of Public Transportation that says using public transportation saves the equivalent of 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline a year. School buses can also save a total of 2.3 billion gallons of fuel each year for the 17.3 million cars they replace on the road. Additionally, one person switching to public transit can reduce daily carbon emissions by 20 pounds, or more than 4,800 pounds in a year.

IC Bus will be announcing the the winner of America’s Greenest School, as well as who will take home the title of Canada’s Greenest School. Both schools will become the proud owners of a hybrid-electric school bus and win a “green” audit of their school. The company planned on announcing both today.

Meanwhile, the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress released a report on the eve of Earth Day that shows rising oil prices could hurt the country’s economic recovery and hinder progress on energy-efficiency policies.

“As we celebrate Earth Day, we can be proud of all that our country has accomplished to protect our air, water, and land,” said U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), chair of the JEC. “Put simply, rising prices could simultaneously threaten our economic recovery and make it more difficult to pursue clean energy policies that move the country away from our dependence on oil. When consumers are paying more at the tank, they have less to spend on fueling our economy.”