CONGRESSMAN BISHOP CALLS ON CONGRESS TO BUILD BACK BETTER, INVEST IN JOBS THAT PROTECT CHILDREN AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Sep 9, 2021
FORT VALLEY, GA – Yesterday, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) spoke at a local event highlighting the Build Back Better Budget. He noted that federal investments that promote manufacturing and buying electric vehicles can create good jobs as well as protect children and the environment from air pollution. Also speaking at the event were Peach County Commissioner Shanita Bryant, Fort Valley City Councilman Fred Van Hartesveldt, Andy Moore, a program director at the Blue Bird Corporation, and representatives of U.S. Senators Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock. The Congressman was invited to speak by the Climate Action Campaign and Moms Clean Air Force.
“Millions of children ride the bus to school every day, and if they are riding in fossil fuel buses, they can be exposed to more concentrated levels of air pollution which harms their health and hurts their grades,” said Congressman Sanford Bishop. “Electric school buses do not expose our children to these toxins. An electric school bus also can save our schools, on average, $2,000 in fuel costs and $4,400 in maintenance costs each year. As Congress works on its Build Back Better Budget, the inclusion of investments in clean transportation technology, like electric school buses, will reap benefits for the environment, our children, and the economy.”
The transportation sector is a large source of carbon pollution and living with air pollution has been linked to greater public health problems. The inside of a fossil fuel school bus can be 5 to 10 times as polluted as the air right outside of it, exposing children to harmful nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide. Air pollution exposure in communities can lead to higher rates of lung disease like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), as well as greater hospitalizations due to pneumonia. According to a 2020 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the annualized total medical expenditures, in 2017 dollars, were $7 billion for asthma and $5 billion for COPD.
In July, Congressman Bishop toured the Blue Bird Corporation facilities in Fort Valley. The company is an industry leader and is now a pioneer in producing electric buses. The Congressman learned more about the manufacturing processes they use to build electric school buses and discussed how federal investments in clean technology, like electric school buses, would help reduce air pollution while creating good jobs for Georgians.