Barre, Vermont School District Gets EPA Funds for Lower Emission Buses

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BOSTON -- The Barre Town School District was chosen to receive $60,000 from EPA to pay for three new school buses that emit less pollution than the older buses. The Vermont school district will receive the rebates through EPA’s Diesel Emissions Reduction Act funding.

Barre Town School District was among five fleets in New England and 76 fleets in 30 states that will receive more than $3 million in rebates through the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act, administered by EPA. Nationwide, the funds will pay to replace 210 older diesel school buses with new buses that are more than 90 percent cleaner. The replacements will reduce pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and particulate matter that are linked to health problems including asthma and lung damage.

“When we put our children on the school bus in the morning, parents should not have to worry that their kids’ health will suffer from the buses’ tailpipe exhaust,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “These EPA Clean Diesel funds will help protect our children and will help create cleaner healthier communities.”

Since 2008, the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act program has funded more than 600 clean diesel projects across the country. These projects have reduced emissions for more than 60,000 engines.

EPA has put in place standards to make diesel engines more than 90 percent cleaner, but many older diesel school buses are still in operation. Older diesel engines emit large amounts of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and particulate matter. These pollutants are linked to health problems, including aggravated asthma, lung damage, and other serious health problems.

Elsewhere in New England, three school districts in Connecticut were also chosen to receive $245,000 from EPA to pay for 11 new school buses that emit less pollution than their older buses. Killingly School District will receive $125,000 and Montville Public Schools $100,000, each to replace five school buses. Martel Transportation serving Canton school will receive $20,000 to replace one bus in its fleet. And GRS Cooperative School District in New Hampshire will receive $20,000 in rebates for one bus through the program.

Applicants were randomly selected and placed in order on a list until a total of $3 million was allocated. This was EPA’s second round of the rebate program aimed at replacing older diesel school buses. Public and private school bus fleets were eligible to apply for the funds to replace school buses with engine model years of 2006 or older.

The American School Bus Council estimates each school bus takes about 36 cars off the road each day, which reduces emissions and saves fuel costs for passenger cars.

More information about the Clean Diesel DERA rebate program: http://epa.gov/cleandiesel/dera-rebate-schoolbus.htm#2014

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