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Emission: Advocates Call for Faster Replacement of Diesel School Buses

Health and environmental advocates today called on communities, school boards and governments at every level to accelerate the electrification of school buses, replacing tens of thousands of diesel-powered school buses spewing toxic fumes that can seriously harm child health and interfere with learning.

Led by the Canadian Partnership for Children’s Health and Environment (CPCHE), a coalition of 34 organisations made the goal of all-electric school bus fleets in Canada the central focus of this year’s national Healthy Environments for Learning Day (April 27).

The joint call for urgent action by relevant decision-makers nationwide

closely follows the publication in January of new scientific evidence from British Columbia that even “brief diesel exhaust exposure acutely impairs functional brain connectivity.

While adult subjects were studied, the new research raises further concerns about impaired brain function and learning ability of children breathing diesel fumes.

Other research has warned that diesel exhaust may impede child neurodevelopment, spatial learning, attention and memory, and contributes to a myriad other physical and mental health problems (detailed below), as well as climate change.

“Faced with the existential threat posed by climate change and mounting scientific evidence of the harm to children caused by traffic-related air pollution, including diesel exhaust, more comprehensive and urgent action is needed to bring electric school bus transportation to all communities across Canada,” the declaration says.

It underlines that “electric school buses are a viable solution that eliminates diesel bus emissions and exemplifies local action on climate change.”

The majority of Canada’s 50,000 school buses use diesel fuel. Each year, school buses make 792 million trips to carry roughly 2.2 million children to and from school.

Says CPCHE Executive Director Erica Phipps: “Buses operating close to schools mean that all children, not just those riding the buses, can be exposed to and affected by diesel exhaust.”

“The financial savings achieved over time by switching to cleaner, more sustainable school transportation more than make up for the initial cost of an electric bus. By switching to electric school buses, we can help our children thrive physically and intellectually while protecting the environment for generations to come with a tangible, visible action on climate change.”


Dare Akogun

Dare Akogun is a dynamic media innovator, strategic communication professional, and seasoned climate and environmental sustainability journalist with over 10 years of influential contributions to the media industry.

He Currently serving as the Head of Digital Media, Senior News Editor, and a presenter at Sobi FM 101.9, a leading radio station in Ilorin, Nigeria.

Dare is on a mission to leverage his media innovation expertise and project management skills to produce high-quality, accurate, and engaging content, while advocating for reduced fossil fuel consumption, especially coal, to combat effect of global warming.

He has covered comprehensively environmental issues and COP conferences, including COP28 in Dubai last year , COP 27 in Egypt, and the United Nations Least Developed Countries conference in Doha, in 2023.

He is a recipient of fellowship to be part of a 15 team of journalists selected worldwide to cover the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2024.

He has a Master's Degree in Mass Communication, from the University of Lagos, a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the Lagos State University and also a
Certification in Business Administration and Management, from the Babson College, Massachusetts, United States of America.

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