Survey finds most school transportation officials plan to cut diesel school bus emissions this year
ISELIN, NJ, June 29, 2007 – A recent survey of school transportation officials across the country found that 60% are implementing projects in 2007 to cut diesel pollution from school buses in their communities. More than 76% said they are planning future projects to cut school bus emissions.
The survey, sponsored by School Transportation News magazine and www.dieselretrofitdaily.com, a blog about retrofit strategies for older diesel vehicles, also asked the officials how they plan to reduce diesel pollution. Most said they will continue using diesel buses, but expect to purchase newer, cleaner buses and/or install pollution-control devices on older buses.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that of the nation’s 450,000 school buses, about 390,000 are diesel powered. New, stricter rules for diesel emissions will result in cleaner buses in the future, but many older vehicles that are in use today will be on the road for years to come.
While most of the survey respondents place a high priority on cleaning diesel bus emissions, they also say that the availability of government or third-party funding is the most important factor in determining their approach to the issue. With local school budgets under strain, additional sources of funding are critical to continued progress in reducing bus emissions.
One potential source of funding, the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) program, was largely unfamiliar to the respondents. CMAQ is a source for state and local governments to fund transportation projects and programs to help meet the requirements of the Clean Air Act. The authorized spending level for the CMAQ program in 2007 is more than $1.7 billion. Initiatives to clean diesel bus emissions are eligible for funding under CMAQ rules, but more than 40% of the survey respondents have never heard of the program and an additional 32% know few of the specifics about CMAQ. Information about CMAQ can be found on www.dieselretrofitdaily.com.
The online survey included 200 school transportation officials from 36 states. Bus fleets under their management range from fewer than 20 vehicles to more than 100.
School Transportation News is a monthly news and feature magazine serving the field of pupil transportation. It is published by STN Media Co., Inc. Find School Transportation News online at www.stnonline.com.
Dieselretrofitdaily.com is sponsored by BASF Catalysts LLC, a provider of diesel emissions control technology. BASF Catalysts, part of the BASF Group, offers exceptional expertise in the development of technologies that protect the air we breathe, produce the fuels that power our world and ensure efficient production of a wide variety of chemicals, plastics, adsorbents and other products.
BASF Catalysts, a division of BASF Corporation, is the world’s leading supplier of environmental and process catalysts. The group offers exceptional expertise in the development of technologies that protect the air we breathe, produce the fuels that power our world and ensure efficient production of a wide variety of chemicals, plastics, adsorbents and other products.
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