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EPA's Clean Diesel School Bus Rebate Program is open for application!

2018 EPA School Bus Rebate Program

Over $9 million available

Application Submission Deadline Approaching

November 6, 2018

EPA to offer rebates in addition to grants to reduce harmful emissions from older, dirtier diesel vehicles. The rebate program has funded vehicle replacements or retrofits for over one thousand vehicles to date. Typically, the rebate application period opens in the fall and projects are completed in less than one year.

2018 DERA School Bus Rebate Program

School buses travel over four billion miles each year, providing the safest transportation to and from school for more than 25 million American children every day. However, diesel exhaust from these buses has a negative impact on human health, especially for children, who have a faster breathing rate than adults and whose lungs are not yet fully developed.

The 2018 School Bus Rebate Program will offer over $9 million to public and private fleet owners for the replacement of old diesel school buses with new buses certified to EPA’s cleanest emission standards. EPA will award selected applicants $15,000-20,000 per bus for scrapping and replacing old buses. 

Important Dates

Activity Date
2018 DERA School Bus Rebate Program opens. EPA begins accepting applications with scans of titles and registrations submitted to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov. Monday, October 1, 2018
Webinar for applicants:
LINK TO WEBINAR
Call-in Number: 1-202-991-0477
Access Code: 210 7951#
Thursday, October 11, 2018
2:00-3:00 p.m. ET 
Deadline for submitting application questions to CleanDiesel@epa.gov helpline Tuesday, October 30, 2018
Deadline for emailing applications with scans of bus titles and registrations to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov
Tuesday, November 6, 2018

4 p.m. ET

Official selection letters emailed to selectees  and wait-list posted online January 2019 (estimated)
Deadline for submitting copies of purchase orders for replacement buses April 2019 (estimated)
Deadline for submitting documentation of delivery of replacement buses and scrappage of old buses. EPA will send rebate payment within one month of receipt of complete materials.  September 2019

Rebate Application Form and Supporting Documents

The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document will be updated weekly during the application period. Questions and answers submitted through October 30, including those from the webinar, will be added to this document.

Eligible Entities

  • Regional, state, or tribal agency that has jurisdiction over transportation and air quality, including school districts and municipalities
  • Private entities that operate school buses under a contract with an entity listed above
  • Fleets with up to 100 school buses may submit one application listing up to 10 buses for scrappage and replacement
  • Fleets with more than 100 school buses may submit up to two rebate applications, each listing up to 10 different buses for scrappage and replacement

Selection Process

  • Applicants will be selected in a lottery, with at least one selectee from each state/territory represented in the applicant pool.

Eligible Old School Buses to be Replaced

  • Used to transport 10+ pre-primary, primary, or secondary school students to school or homes
  • Driven 10k or more miles over the last 12 months or in use 3+ days/week during the school year
  • Owned by applicant without any active liens
  • Class 3-8 diesel-powered buses [greater than 10,000 lb Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR)]
  • Buses powered by 2006 or older model year engines must be replaced with buses powered by a 2017 or newer model year engine
  • Engine and chassis must be scrapped before receiving rebate payment

Eligible Replacement Buses

  • Powered by a 2017 or newer model year engine. Eligible replacement buses may operate on diesel, gasoline, battery, or alternative fuels.
  • Operate in a similar manner and over similar routes as the bus being replaced
  • Be purchased, not leased or leased-to-own 
  • Rebate reimbursement is $15,000 for replacement buses between 10,001-19,500 lbs. GVWR and $20,000 for replacement buses with GVWR of 19,501 lbs. or higher

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Funding & Training Opportunities

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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