Valley Air District scores major EPA grant

Photo by Rigo Moran

San Joaquin Valley Air District Governing Board accepts $9 million in new federal clean air funding

SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY – The Valley Air District Governing Board recently accepted over $9 million in grant funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to replace agricultural tractors and heavy-duty diesel trucks in the San Joaquin Valley.

In a statement, Samir Sheikh, Executive Director and Air Pollution Control Officer of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District said these grant funds provide significant resources that help in deploying the latest and cleanest technologies to speed up emission reductions, protect public health and meet air quality targets.

“With these funds and matching investments by Valley residents and farmers, the EPA is acknowledging the unique challenges of the Valley and providing much needed and appreciated financial assistance,” Sheikh said.

The Valley Air District submitted two proposals to the EPA for the Diesel Emission Reduction Act 2022-2023 National Clean Diesel Funding Assistance Program. This past March, the District was informed that the agricultural tractor replacement proposal and the heavy-duty diesel truck replacement proposal were each awarded $4.5 million in funding, the maximum amount available under this grant.

To date, the District’s Agricultural Tractor Replacement Program has provided over $820 million to replace more than 12,800 older, high-polluting agricultural tractors with new, significantly cleaner units, resulting in the reduction of more than 67,700 tons of NOx. The $4.5 million from this grant aims to fund the replacement of approximately 102 additional older, high-polluting tractors, with match funding provided by the grant recipients.

Additionally, the Heavy-Duty Diesel Truck Replacement Program has successfully provided over $158 million to replace more than 3,000 valley-based heavy-duty trucks with new, cleaner trucks and has resulted in the reduction of more than 6,500 tons of NOx and 53 tons of PM. The $4.5 million from this grant will fund the replacement of approximately 18 older, high-polluting class 5-8 trucks with replacement trucks certified to zero-emissions with significant match funding provided by the grant recipients.

A complete listing of available District grant programs for residents, businesses and agencies and the requirements can be found at www.valleyair.org/grants or by calling program staff at 559-230-5800.

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