The Los Angeles Unified School District plans to purchase more than 180 new electric school buses and other electric vehicle infrastructure as part of its ambitious green energy plans.

School district officials say the acquisition will be the largest single EV bus purchase ever made by a school district.

Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said the district plans to fully electrify its bus yard in Sun Valley by 2026, adding that the district was committed to “creating a model of sustainability that benefits our students, our school communities and generations to come.”

Carvalho called the goal “aggressive,” but said it was necessary to reduce the school district’s impact on the environment.

The Sun Valley Bus Yard serves the northern portion of LAUSD, with about 180 buses responsible for transporting more than 4,600 students to and from school. The existing fleet consists of natural gas, gasoline and propane-powered buses, alongside six EVs. Diesel buses were removed from the fleet in 2022.

When the purchase is completed and the new infrastructure is installed, district officials estimate the upgraded fleet will reduce its carbon dioxide output by 780,000 tons and reduce its yearly maintenance bills by about $10,000.

The bus yard will also undergo improvements to security and operational effectiveness. The school district is also exploring the possibility of adding solar panels and has even floated the idea of using the facility as a learning ground for students enrolled in the adult education curriculum.

Planning and engineering is currently underway and the school district is expected to bring the funding request to the Board of Education later this year. If approved, construction is expected to begin in 2024, officials said.

Four years ago, the Los Angeles Unified Board of Education adopted a resolution to become a 100% clean, renewable energy operation by 2040, including transportation, heating, ventilation and cooking. The school district hopes to have its electrical sector run entirely on clean energy by 2030.