PEI to power disaster response with electric school buses from Lion Electric

Quebec electric school bus Lion
Credit: Lion Electric

Prince Edward Island (PEI) is set to become the first province in Canada to utilize all-electric school buses to respond to power outages caused by natural disasters.

The project will leverage the vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology available on Quebec-based Lion Electric’s electric school buses. In the event of a power outage, one of the LionC electric school buses will be able to power the North Rustico Lions Club, which served as a warming center during the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona.

The LionC electric school buses utilize V2G technology, allowing them to be charged during periods of low power demand, such as overnight. In the event of extreme weather events like hurricanes, the bidirectional chargers can draw power from the bus batteries to support emergency heating centers that have lost power from the grid. The integration of V2G technology into the LionC buses allows for efficient energy storage and distribution, reinforcing the province’s objective of achieving net-zero targets.

“Thanks to Lion, we have taken a big step in our government’s commitment to building a generation power network that will ensure essential services can continue during power outages,” said PEI’s Environment, Energy, and Climate Action Minister, Steven Myers.

PEI aims to have a total of 82 LionC electric school buses by the end of May, with an additional 125 electric buses planned to be added to the fleet over the next five years. The electrification of transportation, including cars and buses, is a crucial aspect of the province’s sustainable transportation strategy.

The North Rustico Lions Club will serve as the pilot site for this vehicle-to-building initiative, with the intention of expanding the program to other communities on the island. Andrea Greenan, the deputy mayor of North Rustico, expressed excitement about the project, stating, “As we expect more frequent and increasingly intense hurricanes in the future, we are looking forward to the ease of use the buses will provide while reducing our reliance on fossil fuels.”

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