Monday, March 28, 2016

EPA Report: Diesel Engine Grant Program Has Delivered Major Air, Public Health Benefits

Diesel powered truck (Credit: Shutterstock) Click to Enlarge.
Clean diesel grants aimed at cleaning up old diesel engines have greatly improved public health by cutting harmful pollution that causes premature deaths, asthma attacks, and missed school and workdays, according to a new report by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Since its start in 2008, the Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) program has significantly improved air quality for communities across the country by retrofitting and replacing older diesel engines.  From 2009 to 2013, EPA awarded $520 million to retrofit or replace 58,800 engines in vehicles, vessels, locomotives or other pieces of equipment.

EPA estimates that these projects will reduce emissions by 312,500 tons of NOx and 12,000 tons of PM2.5 over the lifetime of the affected engines.  As a result of these pollution reductions, EPA estimates a total present value of up to $11 billion in monetized health benefits over the lifetime of the affected engines, which include up to 1,700 fewer premature deaths associated with the emission reductions achieved over this same period.  These clean diesel projects also are estimated to reduce 18,900 tons of hydrocarbon (HC) and 58,700 tons of carbon monoxide (CO) over the lifetime of the affected engines.

The program has also saved 450 million gallons of fuel and prevented 4.8 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions—equivalent to the annual CO2 emissions from more than 900,000 cars.  EPA estimates that clean diesel funding generates up to $13 of public health benefit for every $1 spent on diesel projects.

Operating throughout our transportation infrastructure today, 10.3 million older diesel engines—the nation’s “legacy fleet,” built before 2008—need to be replaced or repowered to reduce air pollutants.  While some of these will be retired over time, many will remain in use, polluting America’s air for the next 20 years.  DERA grants and rebates are gradually replacing legacy engines with cleaner diesel engines.  Priority is given to fleets in regions with disproportionate amounts of diesel pollution, such as those near ports and rail yards.

Read more at EPA Report: Diesel Engine Grant Program Has Delivered Major Air, Public Health Benefits

No comments:

Post a Comment