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U.S. EPA Awards over $100,000 to Pacific Territories for Clean Diesel Projects

Release Date: 10/15/2012
Contact Information: Dean Higuchi, 808-541-2711, higuchi.dean@epa.gov

(10/15/12) SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently awarded over $100,000 in grants for clean diesel projects in the Pacific Territories. This is part of the agency’s ongoing national campaign with $30 million being awarded to reduce harmful diesel exhaust that can lead to asthma attacks and premature deaths.

The West Coast Collaborative administers the Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) program in the Pacific Territories. The DERA program is designed to help owners and operators replace, retrofit or repower older medium- and heavy-duty diesel-powered engines like those that operate in marine vessels, port equipment, locomotives, construction and agriculture equipment, trucks and buses.

“Awarding these important diesel emission reduction projects is another example of how collaboration amongst public and private partners can benefit everyone – most importantly the communities in which these projects are located” said Jared Blumenfeld, U.S.EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest Region. “Residents, employees and visitors to the Pacific Territories will be able to breathe cleaner, healthier air.”

-Guam Environmental Protection Agency received $29,060 to reduce diesel emission from school buses through diesel oxidation catalyst retrofits.

-American Samoa Power Authority received $28,494 to offsetting the cost differential to purchase Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) to power island generators.

-Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands Division of Environmental Quality $42,756 to work on retrofitting power generation plants to enable the use of cleaner ULSD.

Over the life of these three projects combined, emission will be reduced by approximately 7,545 tons of nitrogen oxides (NOx), 650 tons of particulate matter (PM), 165 tons of hydrocarbons (HC), and 12 tons of carbon monoxide (CO).

Diesel engines are durable, fuel-efficient workhorses in the American economy. However, older diesel engines that predate newer, cleaner standards emit large amounts of air pollutants, such as NOx and PM. These pollutants are linked to health problems, including asthma, lung and heart disease and premature death. The clean diesel projects funded through these grants will work to address the more than 11 million older diesel engines that continue to emit higher levels of pollution.

DERA was enacted in 2005 and since it was first funded in fiscal year 2008, EPA has awarded over 500 grants nationwide. These projects have reduced hundreds of thousands of tons of air pollution and saved millions of gallons of fuel. More on the grants and the National Clean Diesel Campaign may be found at: http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel .

These projects are part of the West Coast Collaborative which is part of the U.S. EPA National Clean Diesel Campaign. The Collaborative is a an ambitious partnership between leaders from federal, state, and local government, the private sector and environmental groups committed to reducing diesel emissions. Partners come from all over the Western North America, including Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and the Pacific Island Territories of American Samoa, the Common Wealth of the Northern Marianas Islands, and Guam, Canada and Mexico.

More information about the West Coast Collaborative may be found at: http://www.westcoastcollaborative.org .

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