The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced on Thursday that it has awarded over $1.6 million in Diesel Emission Reduction Act grants to public and private partners in Arizona.
The $1,617,086 will be used to replace old polluting diesel vehicles such as school buses, refuse trucks and heavy-duty trucks operating in Maricopa County.
“Maricopa County is pleased to announce that the 2020 DERA program will provide funding for two zero-emissions electric school buses, as well as additional cleaner-burning vehicles,” Maricopa County Air Quality Department Director Philip McNeely said in the release.
Recipients of this year’s funding include public and private entities in both Maricopa and Yuma Counties. These projects are a step forward in achieving progress towards cleaner air in Arizona.”
A total of $1,096,362 will be going to the City of Phoenix Public Works Department in order to replace nine diesel refuse trucks with new ones that are “powered by ultra-low NOx compressed natural gas engines.” Those funds will be combined with the $2,394,886 from the City of Phoenix.
The Maricopa County Air Quality Department received $520,724 that will be used to replace 12 heavy-duty diesel vehicles, including six school busses and six short-haul trucks.
Three propane buses and two battery-electric buses will be included within the replacement trucks. Those funds will also be combined with $347,149 in state matching funds and $1,474,335 in cost-share funds from participating fleets.
“The DERA grants are a great example of a federal-local partnership that results in tangible action to reduce emissions,” Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego said in a press release.
“The equipment the City of Phoenix will deploy with the help of this second year of grants will not only deliver the essential services of trash and recycling pickup, they will also contribute to our emissions reduction goals and cleaner air in our community.”