Zero-Emission Bus Implementation Guidebook for California Transit Fleets

University of California Institute of Transportation Studies
April 2023

California is in the process of state and local efforts to reduce emissions of pollutants and climate-changing gases, particularly in the transportation industry, which has been experiencing challenges due to economic conditions and the ongoing global pandemic. To address the role of transit bus operations in meeting California’s aggressive greenhouse gas (GHG) and emissions, the California Air Resources Board (ARB) has implemented an ambitious Innovative Clean Transit (ICT) regulation that requires all public transit agencies to gradually transition to a 100 percent zero-emission bus (ZEB) fleet. Beginning in 2029, 100% of new purchases by transit agencies must be ZEBs, with a goal for a full transition by 2040.

This plan provides resources and advice for transitioning to a ZEB fleet, including deployment and performance assessments, supportive policies, fueling solutions, training practices for operations and maintenance, and grant program resources. Agencies outside of California can take also take advantage of this resource, which included federal and non-governmental training programs.


Realizing the Workforce Potential of Infrastructure Investments

This report details strategies for states to realize the workforce and job quality potential of infrastructure investments in critical sectors, particularly those poised for significant additional investments through the IIJA and IRA. The report explains specific funding streams on which states can capitalize and outlines a framework for priority actions that states can take to foster broad opportunity to benefit from good quality jobs connected to state spending in two of the most significant infrastructure sectors. The framework highlights examples of models and uses of these strategies from around the country, including a summary of instances of public infrastructure agencies embedding job quality and workforce aims into competitive procurement processes to influence private sector practices.

Markle; Eno Center for Transportation; National Association of State Energy Officials
February 2023

Building Pathways to Infrastructure Careers: Framework for Preparing an Infrastructure Workforce

This resource provides a framework for all workforce stakeholders, including infrastructure project leads, to engage the public workforce system in implementing the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law with strong workforce commitments and proven strategies that produce high-quality education, training, and employment opportunities for all workers.

U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration
October 2022

Attracting, Retaining, and Developing the 2030 Transportation Workforce

This report provides a guide with specific strategies and action plans to help agencies identify and address workforce needs through 2030 and beyond.

National Cooperative Highway Research Program
October 2022

State departments of transportation are responsible for providing a safe, efficient, and effective transportation system of infrastructure and services. To meet these responsibilities, transportation agencies need a highly skilled workforce with the expertise required to identify and address current transportation needs while also being prepared to address the challenges of the future.

Contributor(s): National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Transportation Research BoardNational Cooperative Highway Research Program; Candace Blair Cronin; Allison Alexander; Grace Arnold; Juan Carlos Batarse; Kelly Dray; Sasha Iliev; Jessica Jenkins; Erik Smallwood; Rachel Smart; Jake Streng; Mara Campbell; Susan Gallagher; Tyler Reeb; Tom O’Brien; Glenn McRae


The Road to Zero Emission Buses — National Coordinated Effort to Prepare Frontline Technicians

Transit Workforce Center
March 2022

Transitioning from work with the 12- and 24-volts electrical systems in traditional diesel and CNG buses to Zero Emissions Buses (ZEBs), with upwards of 800 volts, requires a significant commitment to additional skills training and development. The Transit Workforce Center is producing critical resources as part of a nationally coordinated effort to help prepare frontline technicians with the training needed to meet the challenges and  demands of this new technology. This document summarizes our ZEB resources.


Transit Workforce Center Resources and Best Practices for a Zero Emission-Workforce Fleet Transition Plan

A supplemental resource to aid agencies seeking to develop and implement a carefully planned joint labor-management workforce strategy for the transition to a zero-emission fleet in partnership with its workforce.  Examples of best practices, lessons learned, and other resources are provided to help transit agencies examine and address their workforce needs and are not intended to be all-inclusive given the unique circumstances of that transit agencies face.

Transit Workforce Center
March 2022

Providing Training for Zero Emission Buses: Recommended Expanded RFP Language

This document includes recommended language for agencies to build robust training procurement into their ZEB Request for Proposals. It is intended to be used as a starting point for agencies to tailor their training procurement to suit their specific needs.

International Transportation Learning Center; Jobs to Move America
February 2022

Zero Emission Transit Bus Technology Analysis Volume 2

This report, Volume 2, is the second edition of the Zero Emission Transit Bus Technology Analysis (ZETBTA) which includes results from the fuel-cell electric bus (FCEB), battery electric bus (BEB), diesel hybrid bus, and conventional diesel bus technologies control fleet. It integrates lessons learned and best practices gleaned from AC Transit’s extensive experience in deploying ZEB technologies, including developing innovative workforce training programs, data integration and management, and transit deployment viability.

AC Transit
December 2021

A Zero-Emission Transition for the U.S. Transit Fleet

This report offers a roadmap for federal lawmakers in support of making a complete transition to zero-emission vehicles in transit, including an accounting of estimated agency costs, key assumptions underpinning those figures, acknowledgement of limitations, and workforce development considerations.

Center for Transportation and the Environment
May 2021

Bus Electrification: The Role Agencies Can Play in Workforce Equity

In this webinar, speakers discuss the issues of procurement, manufacturing, job creation, and job equity associated with fleet electrification.

Eno Center for Transportation
April 2021


  • Christy Veeder, PhD, National Program Director, Jobs to Move America
  • Brianne Eby, Senior Policy Analyst, Eno Center for Transportation


Electrifying Transit: A Guidebook for Implementing Battery Electric Buses

This guidebook assists stakeholders with interest in deploying battery-electric buses by describing decisions and considerations required for successful BEB implementation. It includes information about the benefits and barriers of BEBs, BEB basics, charging infrastructure, operation and maintenance, and costs.

United States Agency for International Development; National Renewable Energy Laboratory
April 2021

Guidebook for Deploying Zero-Emission Transit Buses

The TCRP Research Report 219: Guidebook for Deploying Zero-Emission Transit Buses is designed to provide transit agencies with information on current best practices for ZEB deployments and lessons learned from previous deployments, industry experts, and available industry resources.

Transportation Cooperative Research Program
January 2021

Contributor(s): National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Transportation Research BoardTransit Cooperative Research Program; Meredith Linscott; Amy Posner


Mountain Line Zero-Emission Bus Implementation Plan

This is the Zero Emission Bus (ZEB) Implementation Plan prepared by the Northern Arizona intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority (referred to as Mountain Line) in contract with the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) with the aim of identifying a zero-emission roadmap for full-scale deployment.

Center for Transportation and the Environment; AECOM
December 2020

Bus Maintenance and Bus Testing Program Peer-to-Peer Exchange

This report presents a summary of the bus maintenance worker training peer exchange, hosted by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). Significant shifts in the types of transit buses being procured (e.g., from traditional buses to alternative fuel/low- and no-emission buses) require new and different types of frontline worker training. Through the peer exchange, stakeholders, including industry representatives, shared knowledge about bus maintenance worker training and discussed best practices for developing the next generation of highly-skilled bus technicians.

Federal Transit Administration
May 2020

Battery Electric Buses—State of the Practice

This report documents current practices of transit systems in the planning, procurement, infrastructure installation, operation, and maintenance of battery electric buses (BEBs). The synthesis is intended for transit agencies that are interested in understanding the potential benefits and challenges associated with the introduction and operation of BEBs.

Transit Cooperative Research Program
March 2018

Contributor(s): National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Transportation Research BoardTransit Cooperative Research Program Synthesis ProgramSynthesis ProgramTransit Cooperative Research Program; Jason Hanlin; Darby Reddaway; Julia Lane


Rail Transit Track Inspection Practices

TRBs Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Synthesis 107: Rail Transit Track Inspection Practices offers information across a range of older and newer U.S. rail transit agencies on track inspection practices and policies.

Issues addressed in the report include agency staffing, agency organization and characteristics, track inspection program criteria, training and certification, procurement, and track safety practices.

Contributors: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Transportation Research Board; Transit Cooperative Research Program; John F. Zuspan

Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP)
January 2013

The Workforce Challenge

This report compiles research about the issues facing the transportation workforce, including changing skills, an aging workforce, and low prioritization of training. The report recommends working to expand existing federal and academic resources, create an institutional focus for the issue, and establish human resources management as a strategic function within the transportation community.

Transportation Research Board
January 2003