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News Releases

September 23, 2019

FAA Awards Airport Zero Emissions Pilot Program Grant Funding

John Wayne Airport will embark on a multi-year project to replace compressed natural gas (CNG) powered vehicles with electric zero emissions vehicles, funded in part by the Airport Zero Emissions Vehicle and Infrastructure Pilot Program (ZEV) administered by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The $2.1 million grant will provide 80% funding for the purchase of three zero emissions shuttle buses, charging equipment, and infrastructure modifications.

John Wayne Airport Terminal

“The ZEV program is designed to facilitate the implementation of zero emissions vehicles at Airports, encouraging technology advancement and raising community awareness,” said Orange County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Lisa Bartlett. “By switching to electrically-powered shuttle buses the Airport will reduce emissions and improve Airport air quality.”

The Airport requested ZEV program funds as part of a four-year plan to replace CNG-powered shuttle buses with electric counterparts.  During the first phase of the project, expected to cost approximately $2.6 million, the Airport will purchase three 35-foot electric shuttle buses, and install electric charging stations and supporting electrical infrastructure. The Airport plans to replace approximately three CNG-powered vehicles per year through the remaining phases of the project.

“John Wayne Airport is an industry leader in environmental policy best practices,” stated Orange County Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Michelle Steel. “The implementation of an entirely electric fleet of shuttle vehicles is one more example of our commitment to sustainable technologies.”

John Wayne Airport shuttle buses provide transportation between the Airport terminal and the public and employee parking lots on Main Street. Based on the estimated timeline for procurement, installation and infrastructure improvements, the new electric shuttle vehicles should be operational in early 2021.

For more information about John Wayne Airport’s Environmental Policies and Practices, please visit


John Wayne Airport (SNA) is owned by the County of Orange and is operated as a self-supporting enterprise that receives no general fund tax revenue. The Airport serves more than 10 million passengers annually and reaches more than 20 nonstop destinations in the United States, Canada and Mexico. More information can be found at Like us on, or follow us on Twitter @johnwayneair and Instagram @johnwayneair.