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    Funding & Training Opportunities

    EPA’s Advance Program Team is sharing an abundance of information on funding and training opportunities that could relate to your efforts to improve air quality! Take advantage of these opportunities today!

    This blog post summarizes a wide variety of current funding and training opportunities that may relate to your local efforts to improve air quality. Please take a look and take advantage of the opportunities that can help you with your work!

    Environmental Protection Agency

    Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) National Grants

    EPA anticipates offering the next RFP solicitation in March 2018. Information will be provided here: https://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/clean-diesel-national-grants

    Volkswagen Mitigation Trust

    The U.S. government and VW resolved allegations that VW violated the Clean Air Act by selling approximately 590,000 vehicles equipped with defeat devices.  As part of this settlement, VW is required to provide approximately $2.7 billion for the 2.0 liter violating vehicles and $225 million for the 3.0 liter violating vehicles into an Environmental Mitigation Trust to fully remediate the amount of excess NOx from the illegal vehicles.

    •        Eligible Mitigation Actions focus on reducing NOx from older, dirtier diesel engines, vehicles, equipment, and vessels. Appendix D-2 to the consent decree details the Eligible Mitigation Actions which include projects to repower or replace:
      • Class 8 local freight and port drayage trucks
      • Class 4-8 school bus, shuttle bus, or transit bus
      • Freight switchers
      • Ferries/tugs
      • Class 4-7 local freight trucks
      • Airport ground support equipment
      • Forklifts and port cargo handling equipment, or
      • Install light duty ZEV supply equipment, or
      • Install shore-side system for ocean going vessel shore power

    See https://www.epa.gov/vw or https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/volkswagen-clean-air-act-civil-settlement#violations for more information about the violations and settlement.

    Information on the Louisiana VW Settlement here. 

    Environmental Education Local Grants Program

    This grants program supports locally-focused projects that design, demonstrate, and/or disseminate environmental education practices, methods, or techniques that will serve to increase environmental and conservation literacy and encourage behavior that will benefit the environment. In addition to other environmental topics (including air quality), the 2018 program includes support for projects that reflect the intersection of environmental issues with agricultural best practices, conservation of natural resources, food waste management, and natural disaster preparedness (such as green infrastructure).

    Funding Amount: Up to $3 Milllion
    Application Deadline:March 15, 2018

    More information for Louisiana opportunities can be found here

    Dept. of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service

    Louisiana Conservation Innovation Grants

    This program will stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies in conjunction with agricultural production; certain projects that may be funded by the program have the potential to improve air quality/reduce emissions. The program generally funds pilot projects, field demonstrations, and on-farm conservation research. Applications are accepted from state or local governments, tribes, governmental organizations and individuals. 

    Funding Amount: $150,000 (Up to $75,000 in Individual Awards)
    Application Deadline: April 8, 2018

    More information here

    Patagonia

    Environmental Grants

    This grant opportunity is available to small activist organizations working to protect the environment. Projects must be action-oriented, build public involvement and support, be strategic, focus on root causes, accomplish specific goals and objectives. One proposal per group will be accepted each fiscal year (May 1-April 30).

    Funding Amount: $5,000 to $20,000
    Application Deadline: April 30, 2018

    More information here

    Southeast Louisiana Clean Fuel Partnership

    Clean Fuel Transition Fund for Public Fleets (includes idling reduction)

    Funding is available for 80% of the cost to convert an existing vehicle to an alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) including natural gas, propane, electric, or hybrid electric; 80% of the incremental cost difference when purchasing a new AFV; and 80% of the cost of idle reduction technologies to add to existing or new AFVs.  Public fleets in Jefferson, Orleans, St. Bernard, and St. Charles Parishes are eligible.

    Funding Amount: $909,200
    Application Deadline: Ongoing

    More information here. 

    Louisiana Liquefied Petroleum Gas Commision

    Commercial Propane Mower & Automobile Incentives

    Propane mower incentives are available to private or public commercial mowing fleets in Louisiana. New dedicated liquified petroleum gas (LPG) mowers and conversions of existing mowers are eligible for $1,500 per vehicle (new), up to $800 per conversion, and up to 4 awards and $5,000 per year per entity.

    Funding Amount: $800 to $5,000
    Application Deadline: Ongoing

    More information here. 

     

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    Fact of the Week #1017

    Non-hybrid stop-start systems doubled for light trucks from 2016 to 2017. This type of system shuts down the engine when the vehicle is stopped to reduce idle time.

    FOTW# 1017, February 19: Non-Hybrid Stop-Start Systems Doubled for Light Trucks from 2016 to 2017

    Stop-start systems have been used on hybrid vehicles since hybrids were first introduced almost 20 years ago. In recent years, manufacturers have begun installing stop-start systems in non-hybrid vehicles as well. A vehicle equipped with stop-start will shut down the engine when the vehicle is stopped and start the engine when the brake pedal is released to reduce engine idle time. This is particularly effective in city driving where brief but frequent stops are required due to traffic lights and congestion. The market penetration of non-hybrid stop-start systems on cars grew from 9.1% in 2016 to 14.2% in 2017 while light trucks nearly doubled, reaching 20.3% in 2017. Engines with stop-start technology have different architecture to prevent premature wear of engine components, including the starter. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, stop-start systems improve fuel economy by about 4-5%.

    Non-Hybrid Stop-Start Technology Market Share for Cars and Light Trucks from 2012 to 2017

    * Data for 2017 are preliminary, based on projected production data from the automakers.

    Note: Includes only non-hybrid stop-start technology. The definition of cars and light trucks is the same definition as in the Corporate Average Fuel Economy rulemaking. Thus, the car category includes cars, station wagons, and small 2-wheel drive sport utility vehicles (SUV). The light truck category includes pickups, vans, minivans, 4-wheel drive SUV, and large SUV.

    Sources: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Light-Duty Automotive Technology, Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and Fuel Economy Trends: 1975 Through 2017, EPA-420-R-18-001, January 2018.

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Green Vehicle Guide, Gasoline and Diesel Advanced Technology Vehicles website, accessed January 20, 2018.

    Fact #1017 Dataset

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    Conrad LNG Announces First LNG Bunkering Barge Built in North America

    LCF Member in the News: Conrad LNG: Clean Jacksonville will be delivered to TOTE Maritime in spring of this year.

     

     courtesy of GTTNA

    LCF Member, Conrad LNG is pleased to announce that the Clean Jacksonville – the first LNG bunkering barge ever built in North America – will be delivered to TOTE Maritime in spring of this year. As the first of its kind, this 2,200m3 capacity LNG barge will operate out of the Port of Jacksonville, Florida, supplying TOTE’s two Marlin-class gas-powered container vessels currently running on clean burning natural gas on its Puerto Rican trade route. Conrad was fortunate to work with multiple esteemed industry leaders on this historic endeavor - including TOTE Maritime, Clean Marine Energy (CME), GTT NA, and Bristol Harbor Group.  For more information on the barge project, please visit:

    For questions or inquiries, please contact Beau Berthelot at bjberthelot@conradindustries.com.

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    Platooning Trucks to Cut Cost and Improve Efficiency

    At first glance, platooning doesn’t look like much – just a few tractor-trailers driving down the highway a bit closer together than we’re used to. But, it's not that at all. Learn about the benefits of platooning today!

    At first glance, platooning doesn’t look like much – just a few tractor-trailers driving down the highway a bit closer together than we’re used to. But, what is actually happening is much more complex and presents the opportunity for significant safety, energy efficiency, and cost benefits. Early studies have shown that 65% of current long-haul truck miles could potentially be platooned, reducing total truck fuel consumption by 4%.

     

     Photo Credit: Department of Transportation

    What is Platooning?

    So, what is truck platooning? Platooning involves the use of vehicle-to-vehicle communications and sensors, such as cameras and radar, to virtually connect two or more trucks together in a convoy. The virtual link enables all of the vehicles in the platoon to communicate with each other, allowing them to automatically accelerate together, brake together, and enables them to follow each other at a closer distance than is typically possible with unlinked trucks.

    The technology detects and reacts to stopped or slow vehicles ahead of the platoon and adjusts as needed when a vehicle cuts in between the trucks in the platoon. With current platooning technology, each truck in the platoon has a human driver responsible for steering and taking over the speed and braking as needed. The driver of the first truck leads the platoon and navigates the route. As the technology improves, there may only be the need for a lead driver, or no human drivers at all.

    Why do it?

    Truck platooning could provide many benefits. When implemented, platooning can improve safety, increase energy efficiency, and reduce costs.

    Truck platooning technology includes automatic braking. The automatic brakes are able to react much faster than a human, improving safety and reducing the likelihood of collisions. Truck platoons also take up less space on the road, and experience fewer short or sudden acceleration and braking events, than unlinked trucks. The trucks travelling closer together at smoother speeds improves traffic flow and boosts the efficiency of delivering goods.

    Platooning is also a cost saver. With the trucks driving close together at a constant speed, the lead vehicle cuts through the air and reduces the amount of air hitting the front of, and flowing between, the following vehicles. This is similar to when race cars or cyclists draft off one another in a race. The reduced aerodynamic drag on all of the vehicles in the platoon means that the trucks use less fuel, which reduces operating costs.

    The U.S. Army is interested in platooning technologies for the potential to reduce the number of lives at risk in combat areas. Using platooning technologies in military applications could minimize the number of soldiers needed to man convoy vehicles, resulting in a reduced number of soldiers at risk of encountering roadside bombs.

    Coordinated Research

    The Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office’s (VTO) Energy Efficient Mobility Systems (EEMS) Program coordinates with the U.S Army and the Department of Transportation (DOT) in this shared space to accelerate research and development. DOT’s mission is to serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation system. DOT sees platooning as one way to improve the safety of trucking through collision avoidance features. VTO is interested in the potential to improve energy efficiency and cut costs for businesses and consumers through this technology.

    VTO’s EEMS Program is investigating the potential impact platooning technology could have on energy use in our transportation system. Recent EEMS research done by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory used telematics, or on-board data logging, to estimate the amount of platoonable miles travelled by trucks and found 65% of the miles could be platooned, resulting in a 4% reduction in total truck fuel consumption. Another recent VTO funded study assessed the energy impact of adaptive cruise control and showed that the middle truck in a platoon saves the most at shorter gaps, while the trailing truck saves the most at longer gaps.

    To learn more about the Department's work on connected and automated vehicle technologies, visit the Energy Efficient Mobility Systems page on Vehicle Technologies Office website.

     

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    New Heavy-Duty Vehicle Emissions Calculator Launched

    Argonne National Laboratory launched the Heavy-Duty Vehicle Emissions Calculator (HDVEC) at a presentation at FedFleet 2018 in Washington, DC, the nation’s largest gathering of public fleet managers sponsored by the U.S. General Services Administration.

    Most Complete Online Resource Determines Best Cost-Effective Emissions Reduction
    Options for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles Under VW Settlement Funds

    Washington, DC – Today Argonne National Laboratory launched the Heavy-Duty Vehicle Emissions Calculator (HDVEC) at a presentation at FedFleet 2018 in Washington, DC, the nation’s largest gathering of public fleet managers sponsored by the U.S. General Services Administration.

    This online resource was created to provide state officials and fleet managers with an accurate tool to gauge emissions reductions across various medium- and heavy-duty vehicle project options affiliated with the Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust Settlement. NGVAmerica welcomes the HDVEC tool as reflecting current vehicle availability and emissions performance data and congratulates Argonne on its success.

    “As public officials begin to evaluate how best to clean their state’s air with their allotted VW Trust funding, this resource will prove vital in evaluating cost-effectiveness of real world vehicle options,” said Andrew Burnham of Argonne’s Center for Transportation Research. “The Vehicle Emissions Calculator is a valuable tool for policymakers, fleet managers and procurement administrators alike as they look to compare vehicle technologies for emissions reductions associated with fleet operations.”

    Available at: http://afleet-web.es.anl.gov/hdv-emissions-calculator and linked at NGVAmerica’s website at: http://www.ngvamerica.org/vwactioncenter/, the HDVEC estimates the vehicle operation nitrogen oxide (NOx) and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) as well as the well-to-wheel greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) of current commercially-available alternative fuel medium- and heavy-duty vehicles eligible for funding under the VW settlement.

    Volkswagen’s $2.9 billion Environmental Mitigation Trust fund provides each state an incredible opportunity to make an immediate and tangible impact on air quality
    by targeting medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, the leading source of these toxic air contaminants in almost every metropolitan area.

    “Heavy-duty vehicles are the fastest growing segment of U.S. transportation in terms of energy use and emissions, and HDVs are major emitters of NOx, diesel particulate matter, and greenhouse gases,” said NGVAmerica President Daniel Gage. “Mobile sources account for 50 percent of America’s smog-precursor emissions like NOx. This calculator demonstrates that allocating funds to deploy low-NOx natural gas vehicles provides the best way to deliver immediate and cost-effective NOx reductions and air quality benefit.”

    The tool can calculate results for three project types allowable under the Trust Settlement:

    • Environmental Mitigation with Scrappage – new alternative fuel versus diesel, plus additional benefit from early retirement of the scrapped vehicle.

    • Environmental Mitigation with Repower – vehicle after repower versus diesel before repower.

    • Clean Vehicle Replacement – new alternative fuel versus diesel.

    The HDVEC was developed using Argonne’s Alternative Fuel Life-Cycle Environmental and Economic Transportation Tool (AFLEET) available at: https://greet.es.anl.gov/afleet.

    AFLEET Tool 2017 uses emissions data from both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s MOtor Vehicle Emission Simulator (MOVES) and Argonne’s Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) models. This week marks the deadline for the VW Trustee to designate or certify Beneficiary Status for the States and the start of when states can begin to file settlement funding spending plans. Funds could be available for distribution as early as March, pending approval of state plans.

    For more information on the most cost-effective investment of VW Trust resources for the most NOx emissions reductions attained, visit: http://www.ngvamerica.org/vwactioncenter/.

    NGVAmerica is a national organization of over 200 companies, environmental groups, and government organizations dedicated to the development of a growing, profitable, and sustainable market for vehicles powered by natural gas or biomethane and for using more natural gas in on-road and off-road transportation. NGVAmerica member companies produce, distribute, and market natural gas and biomethane across North America, manufacture and service natural gas vehicles, engines, and equipment, and operate fleets powered by clean-burning gaseous fuels. Find out more at: www.ngvamerica.org.

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