Research & Consulting

Canada's Zero Emission Transit Fund


About the Zero Emission Transit Fund

The Zero Emission Transit Fund, announced in August 2021, includes $2.75 billion in funding over five years to support public transit and school bus operators’ plan for electrification, support the purchase of zero emission buses (ZEBs) and build supporting infrastructure, including charging infrastructure and facility upgrades. This investment is being made in coordination with the Canada Infrastructure Bank’s commitment to invest in zero-emission buses as part of its three-year Growth Plan.

CUTRIC is the Government of Canada’s selected National Planning Service for its Zero Emission Transit Fund. CUTRIC has entered into a five-year contribution agreement with the Government of Canada to support transit agencies with transit fleet decarbonization planning activities.  

Battery electric bus (BEB) and hydrogen fuel cell electric bus (FCEB) technologies are complicated and costly. Public transit needs the right support to accurately predict how battery electric and hydrogen buses will work in their communities and what the cost impact will be. This is a critical juncture in Canada’s history on climate action. This program will take transit agencies from ground zero – not knowing where to start – through to full fleet electrification and decarbonization readiness. It will set the country on a pathway towards zero-emission transit systems for the 21st century.


Eligible Zero Emission Bus Planning services under the program include:


  • Information base strengthening  
  • Zero Emission Bus deployment modelling 
  • Infrastructure and internal capacity requirements assessment 
  • Costing and savings forecast  
  • Risk assessment
  • Procurement plan development
  • Performance measurement strategy development
  • Knowledge-sharing 
  • Other relevant planning activities

How the Zero Emission Transit Fund works

When transit agencies choose to work with CUTRIC for their zero-emission bus planning projects, Infrastructure Canada will cover up to 80% of the costs incurred by CUTRIC for planning projects, while transit agencies and bus operators will be expected to cover the remaining 20% of the costs. CUTRIC will work with transit agencies to complete planning work, and bolster the transition to zero-emission transit bus fleets. Our work will also help communities be prepared and respond to the key challenges of transit electrification.

Step 1 – Submit an Expression of Interest

Once a transit agency has made the decision to decarbonize their fleet and begins its fleet electrification journey, it can submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to Infrastructure Canada (INFC).


Step 2 – Infrastructure Canada reviews EOI

Infrastructure Canada will review the EOI form and will direct applicants to Stage II of the process – Planning. This is where CUTRIC’s ZEB Consulting Services™ is involved.


Step 3 – Applicant to select planning organization partnership

The applicant will select which planning organization it wishes to work with to complete the necessary planning activities before being eligible for any capital funding from the Zero Emission Transit Fund. 


Transit agencies are encouraged to work with the planning support organization selected by Infrastructure Canada, CUTRIC, to conduct planning activities. 


The submission of a planning application form and the negotiation of a contribution agreement with Infrastructure Canada will not be required when working with CUTRIC. Transit agencies will enter into a contract solely with CUTRIC for agreed upon planning services. 


Step 4 – Project initiation discussions

If the applicant chooses to work with CUTRIC, an introduction meeting will be scheduled to discuss the process and put together a proposal for execution.


Step 5 – Your fleet electrification journey begins!


ZETF Process

Benefits of working with CUTRIC



  • Supported energy transition for ~40 transit agencies
  • Completed ~50 decarbonization projects to date

Not-for-profit consulting services

  • Scientific
  • Neutral
  • Client-focused


  • Selected as national partner to Government of Canada
  • Supported smallest to largest Canadian transit agencies
  • Robust services and processes that meet eligibility criteria for transit agencies to pursue next steps

Services provided by CUTRIC



  • Strategic vision setting processes

  • Site and infrastructure needs and constraints assessments  

  • Simulation projects

  • Zero-emission bus implementation and rollout planning projects

  • Lifecycle carbon emission reduction analysis

  • Total cost of ownership and benefits analysis 

  • Risk identification, quantification and analysis

  • Procurement planning

  • Empirical analytics and reporting

To find out more about the Zero Emission Transit Fund program and how CUTRIC can help you reach your climate action goals, please contact Titash Choudhury, Manager: Business Development and Social Analytics

Learn more about this funding program and
get in touch with our team