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EPA awards Diesel Emissions Reduction Act grant for clean air projects in Arizona

11/20/2018
Contact Information: 
Nahal Mogharabi (mogharabi.nahal@epa.gov)
(213) 244-1815

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded $414,882 in Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) grants to the Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD). The funds will be used to retrofit and replace old, polluting diesel vehicles and equipment, including school buses and heavy-duty trucks.

“EPA is committed to improving air quality and advancing cleaner technologies throughout Arizona,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker. “Through these DERA grants with our public and private project partners, we continue our progress toward healthier communities.”

“In Maricopa County, over 60% of the emissions contributing to ozone are from vehicles,” said Arizona Department of Environmental Quality Air Quality Director Timothy Franquist. “Replacing older buses with ones that have newer and cleaner burning engines contributes to the many voluntary efforts we are encouraging within in the community to improve air quality. Small steps can add up to big changes with a population of over 4 million working together.”

The DERA program is administered by the EPA's West Coast Collaborative, a partnership comprised of EPA’s Pacific Southwest and Pacific Northwest Regions, which leverages public and private funds to reduce emissions from the most polluting diesel sources.

Arizona continues to face high ozone days, particularly in the summer. Mobile sources are the largest source of NOx, which contributes to both ozone and PM2.5.

MCAQD plans to use the grant to replace twelve old diesel school buses with model year 2019 buses. The project will also replace four old Class 5 diesel trucks with model year 2019 diesel trucks, and two old Class 7 diesel trucks with model year 2018 diesel trucks. The funds will be combined with $276,588 in matching funds from MCAQD, and $1,685,080 in cost-shared funds from participating fleets.

“This is an excellent example of a collaboration between federal, state and local government that will results in cleaner air,” said Maricopa County Air Quality Director Phil McNeely. “The State Clean Diesel Grant Program with funding and technical assistance from the EPA allows us to partner with many local schools and businesses to work together to combat ozone in Maricopa County and other targeted areas statewide.”

This project will bring cleaner diesel engines to economically disadvantaged communities whose residents suffer from higher-than-average instances of asthma, heart, and lung disease.

To learn more about all of this year's West Coast Collaborative DERA projects, including those awarded in the Pacific Southwest, please visit: http://www.westcoastcollaborative.org.

For more information about EPA's National Clean Diesel campaign and the national DERA awards, visit www.epa.gov/cleandiesel.

Learn more about EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region. Connect with us on Facebook and on Twitter.

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