20 June 2005

US Senator George Voinovich (R-Ohio) and a bipartisan group of co-sponsors has introduced legislation to reduce emissions from existing diesel engines. The proposed Diesel Emissions Reduction Act of 2005 (DERA) would provide up to $200 million per year to state and local governments and nonprofit organizations across the country to reduce emissions from older diesel trucks, buses, and off-road equipment currently in use.

The DERA bill establishes national and state-level grant and loan programs to promote the reduction of diesel emissions. The legislation:

  • Authorizes $1 billion over 5 years ($200 million annually)
  • Provides that 70% of the funds are distributed by EPA
  • Allocates 20% of funds to states to develop retrofit programs with an additional 10% available as an incentive for state’s to match the federal dollars being provided
  • Establishes priority areas for projects—such as those that are more cost-effective and affect the most amount of people—and focuses the federal program on public fleets
  • Includes provisions to help develop new technologies, encourage more action through non-financial incentives, and require EPA to outreach to stakeholders and report on the success of the program.

The initiative has been supported by a number of stakeholders—including the US Environmental Protection Agency, Diesel Technology Forum, Engine Manufacturers Association, individual engine manufacturers, and environmental organizations—who will be working to ensure the passage of the legislation in Congress.

Source: Senator Voinovich (press release)