EPA Awards over $77 Million for Emissions Reduction

25 November 2021

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced over $77 million in grants awarded to projects that reduce diesel emissions from the nation’s existing fleet of older, dirtier engines, and vehicles, including grants to two entities in New York. $53 million was awarded through the 2021 Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) National Grant program, and an additional $24 million was awarded to states through the State DERA grant program.

EPA awarded 55 national DERA grants covering a wide range of projects to reduce diesel emissions including upgrades to school buses, port equipment, and construction equipment. 19 of these awards will support replacing older diesel equipment with zero emission technologies such as transportation refrigeration units, terminal tractors, drayage trucks, refuse trucks, a locomotive, and a port ship-to-shore gantry crane. All 55 projects will reduce diesel pollution and benefit local communities, many of which are facing environmental justice concerns.

Grants to New York entities:

- Hudson Valley Clean Communities: Two grants totally $1,066,429 to replace 19 transportation refrigeration units with fully electric TRUs ($720,618) and replace engines in three crew boats ($345,811).

- Port Authority of NY & NJ: $1,025,000 to replace port drayage trucks with newer, cleaner vehicles.

In selecting projects for awards, priority was given to projects that:

- are in areas designated as having poor air quality;

- reduce emissions from ports and other goods movement facilities;

- benefit local communities;

- incorporate local communities in project planning; and

- demonstrate an ability to continue efforts to reduce emissions after the project has ended. 

EPA also awarded $24 million under EPA’s 2021 DERA State Grants program to 49 states and three territories to implement their own diesel emissions reduction programs locally. This program allows states to target funds towards the diesel emissions reduction projects that best align with local priorities.  

The DERA Program funds grants and rebates that protect human health and improve air quality by reducing harmful emissions from diesel engines. Since the start of the DERA program in 2008, EPA has awarded over $1 billion in grants and rebates to modernize the nation’s diesel fleet and speed the turnover to cleaner on- and off-road heavy-duty trucks and equipment.

In addition to DERA, following the passage of the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, EPA will be making significant investments in the health, equity, and resilience of American communities. EPA will offer a total of $5 billion between fiscal years 2022 and 2026 to fund the replacement of dirtier school buses with low- or no-carbon school buses. Each year, $500 million will be available exclusively for electric school buses and $500 million will be available for electric buses and multiple types of cleaner alternative fuel school buses. In line with the President’s commitment to Justice40, EPA is actively working to ensure DERA funding, including Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding, maximizes the benefits that are directed to underserved communities.

Courtesy of EPA.