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Clean Diesel

Clean Diesel Rebates

2017 School Bus Rebate Application Period is now Open

The Diesel Emissions Reduction Act of 2010 (PDF)(7 pp, 133 K, January 2011, About PDF) allows EPA to offer rebates in addition to grants to reduce harmful emissions from older, dirtier diesel vehicles. The rebate program has funded vehicle replacements or retrofits for over 600 vehicles to date. Typically, the rebate application period opens in the fall and projects are completed in less than one year.

2017 School Bus Replacement and Retrofit Rebates

School buses travel over four billion miles each year, providing the safest transportation to and from school for more than 25 million American children every day. However, diesel exhaust from these buses has a negative impact on human health, especially for children who have a faster breathing rate than adults and whose lungs are not yet fully developed.

EPA designed this rebate program to encourage school bus fleet turnover so more children can ride buses with the cleanest emissions standards or buses that have been retrofitted to reduce emissions. The 2017 School Bus Rebate Program will provide over $7 million to public and private fleet owners for the replacement or retrofit of older school buses. Up to $1 million of the funding total will be available for retrofit funding requests in the selection process.  

Important Dates

When What
September 28, 2017 Application period opens
October 5, 2017
2-3 p.m. ET
Webinar for applicants:
Webinar Slides (PDF)(33 pp, 1.3 MB, October 2017, About PDF)
November 1, 2017 Deadline for submitting questions to the weekly FAQ document
November 14, 2017
4 p.m. ET
Application period closes
January 2018
EPA posts selectee names and waiting list online. 
Official selection letters emailed to selectees.
April 2018
Purchase order submission deadline for replacement buses and retrofits
(90 days after selection letter date)
September 2018 

Deadline for submitting payment documentation demonstrating installation of retrofits, delivery of replacement buses, and scrappage of old buses

Within one month after receipt of
complete payment documentation
Selectees will receive their rebate payment

Rebate Application Form and Supporting Documents

Email your completed rebate application, along with a scanned copy of each vehicle’s title and registration, and if applicable, a letter from the state agency that owns the buses to: CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov. Emailed applications must include the subject line: DERA 2017 SCHOOL BUS REBATE APPLICATION – and the name of your organization.

The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document will be updated weekly during the application period. All questions and answers through November 1, including those from the webinar, will be added to this document. Please email your questions to cleandiesel@epa.gov and type School Bus Rebate Question in the subject line. 

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Eligible Entities

  • Regional, state or local agency; tribal government or native village; or port authority which has jurisdiction over transportation and air quality, including school districts and municipalities; or
  • Private entities that operate school buses under a contract with an entity listed above

Eligible School Buses

  • Used to transport 10+ pre-primary, primary, or secondary school students to school or homes
  • Driven 10k or more miles over the last 12 months or in use 3+ days/week during the school year
  • Class 3-8 diesel-powered buses over 10,001 lb Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR)
  • Replacements: Buses powered by 2006 or older model year engines must be replaced with buses powered by a 2017 or newer model year engine and can qualify for $15k-$20k per bus depending on the GVWR of the replacement buses.
  • Retrofits: Buses powered by 1994-2006 model year engines must be retrofitted with a EPA verified Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC) and have the option of adding a verified Closed Crankcase Ventilation (CCV) system and Fuel Operated Heater (FOH). DOC retrofits can qualify for up to $3000, DOC+CCV can qualify for up to $4000, DOC+FOH can qualify for up to $5000, and DOC+CCV+FOH can qualify for up to $6000 to cover parts and installation. These retrofit options are ideal for schools that are not ready to replace their older buses. EPA will set aside up to $1 million to fund retrofits in the application selection process.

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