5 December 2000

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a new web site devoted the Voluntary Diesel Retrofit Program (VDRP). The program has been designed to address pollution from diesel construction equipment and heavy-duty vehicles that are currently on the road. The web site, designed to help fleet operators, air quality planners in state/local government, and retrofit manufacturers understand the VDRP program and obtain the information they need to create retrofit projects, can be accessed at http://www.epa.gov/otaq/retrofit/.

The voluntary retrofit program, announced by the EPA in March, is based on guidelines developed by NESCAUM. Under the program, states can receive emission credits in their State Implementation Plans (SIP) for retrofitting existing heavy-duty diesel engines with emission control devices. The definition of a retrofit includes retrofitting engines with a catalytic converter or a diesel particulate filter, engine upgrade, engine replacement, and use of clean fuels and/or fuel additives.

Emission control technologies to be used under the VDRP program have to verified by the EPA. The verification program, originally under the administration of NESCAUM, was recently moved to become part of the EPA’s Environmental Technology Verification Program (ETV). Verified technologies are listed in the new VDRP site. The current list includes devices that were automatically verified based on their previous certifications under the UBRR program. New devices and technologies will be added as the verification program progresses.