July 26, 2011
MADISON - Wisconsin is benefitting and will benefit substantially more in the future from the pollution reduction, health cost savings, and local economic incentives provided through clean diesel grants, according to a new state report outlining the effects of diesel vehicle emissions and highlighting improvements made under a clean diesel grant programs.
The more than 20 million diesel engines operating across the country are vital to the economy, from transportation and freight movement to construction, but their emissions account for a significant amount of nitrogen oxide and particulate matter emissions. Because diesel engines have a longer life span than gasoline vehicles, it is important to ensure they are running efficiently to minimize their environmental impact.
The state Department of Natural Resources and its partners administer numerous clean diesel grant programs to help reduce diesel emissions from both public and private vehicle fleets across the state. The grant programs offer financial assistance to diesel equipment operators to purchase and install technologies that will reduce emissions from older diesel equipment while also often improving their bottom line. These grants have been found to be one of the most cost-effective strategies for reducing diesel and mobile source emissions.
"The clean diesel grant programs have been an important resource for many businesses throughout Wisconsin," said William B. Baumann, acting director, Bureau of Air Management. "The grants allow them to increase their profits while being environmentally responsible. It's a win- win."
Grantees garner fuel-efficiency and improve their bottom-line with clean diesel technology installations. Technology manufacturers and vendors, some of which are based in Wisconsin, also receive financial benefits by selling and installing the clean diesel technologies. Wisconsin citizens benefit from cleaner air and health cost savings.
To date, the clean diesel grants offered in Wisconsin have improved more than 3,200 pieces of equipment from all types of diesel operations including truck, school bus, transit bus, construction, agricultural, locomotive and municipal. The grant activities will directly result in 394,000 tons of emission reductions, save 33 million gallons of fuel, and save $142 million in health costs.
The full report is available on the clean diesel grant program page of the DNR website.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Jessica Lawent, vehicle and voluntary air quality programs specialist, DNR-SER, (414) 263-8653