Plan for electric buses in Winnipeg could be moving forward

A plan to electrify Winnipeg buses could be edging forward.

A new report says the city should conduct a detailed study on the cost of buying and running 12 to 20 battery electric buses. It says the analysis should also include the type of charging infrastructure that would be required.

The report says once the test fleet of up to 20 is in operation and cost and benefits are better understood, transit could add 20 to 30 battery electric buses a year until the entire diesel fleet of 630 is replaced.

It also says a standard battery electric bus costs $1.2 million to purchase versus diesel at $600,000, but says the higher prices are expected to drop over the next three to five years.

The report suggests the city could partner with Ottawa because of billions of dollars’ worth of transit and green infrastructure funding available.

Between 2014 and 2017 the city and the province did a trial run with four electric transit buses.