The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says up to $20 million in grant funds will be made available during fiscal-year 2012 to support projects aimed at reducing pollution from U.S.-based diesel fleet vehicles. Another $9 million in direct allocations from a number of states complements the federal funds, the EPA notes.
The money is coming from the Diesel Emission Reduction Program (DERA), which was reauthorized in 2011 to fund projects that target deployment of ‘the most cost-effective clean-diesel strategies.’ At the core of the program is the reduction of diesel emissions in areas that have ‘significant air-quality issues,’ the agency notes.
‘These grants enable owners of older diesel vehicles to make investments that modernize their vehicles while making the air in their communities cleaner and healthier to breathe,’ says Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for the EPA's Office of Air and Radiation.
Organizations that own or operate diesel fleets, along with port authorities, nonprofit organizations and government/tribal agencies, are eligible to apply for funds. Projects should be directed toward reducing air pollution from older school buses, transit buses, heavy-duty diesel trucks, marine engines, locomotives and other diesel engines.
Applicants can pursue a number of strategies to reduce diesel emissions in their vehicles, such as the installation of emission-control and idle-reduction technologies, the use of cleaner fuels, or the upgrade or replacement of engines or vehicles. The technologies, however, must be verified or certified by the EPA or California Air Resources Board.
The EPA notes that the closing date for proposals is June 4. More information can be found HERE.