The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced more than $73 million in grants and funding expected to be awarded to support numerous clean diesel programs and projects across the country, state, and local levels.
More than $50 million in Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) National Grants Program funding is expected to be awarded to implement projects aimed at reducing diesel emissions from the nation’s existing fleet of old engines and vehicles. Additionally, EPA anticipates providing approximately $23.5 million under DERA’s 2020 State Grants program to 48 states and four territories to implement their own diesel emissions reduction programs.
According to EPA Administrator, Andrew Wheeler, “the EPA is proud to support our partners as they deliver cleaner air benefits to local communities across the country, new diesel engines operate cleaner than older engines, and for each dollar invested in clean diesel projects, communities get $13 in cumulative health benefits.”
Over the past three years under the current administration, the EPA has awarded about $300 million in grants and rebates to modernize the diesel fleet and speed the turnover to cleaner on- and off-road heavy-duty trucks and equipment. The combined emission of criteria pollutants and their precursors dropped 7% with a reduction in the following emissions pollutants:
- Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) down 10%
- Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM 2.5) down 1%
- Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) down 16%
- Carbon monoxide (CO) down 6%
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) down 3%
“Reducing diesel emissions helps everyone breathe easier,” EPA Administrator Kurt Thiede said. “The cleaner air made possible through these grants will especially benefit children and other vulnerable populations.”
Much of this assistance has been provided to help better protect areas of poor air quality and areas of highly concentrated diesel pollution, such as ports and distribution centers.
To support the Administrator’s clean air goals, the agency anticipates awarding these grants once all legal and administrative requirements are satisfied. So far in 2020, EPA has finalized awards for 41 clean diesel projects and programs. The agency anticipates completing additional awards throughout the rest of the year.