A coalition of transportation and emissions control companies and associations is turning up the heat on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, urging him to maintain a program that aims to cut diesel emissions from vehicles and equipment by up to 90%.
“The Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) program helps speed the adoption of highly cost-effective and efficient, domestically-produced emission control technologies for the legacy fleet of diesel engines that currently do not meet the most recent emission control standards,” writes a group of 20 stakeholders that includes the American Highway Users Alliance, the American Trucking Associations, the American Association of Railroads, Caterpillar Inc., Cummins Inc., the National School Transportation Association, and the Truck & Engine Manufacturers Association.
“Through this valuable program, older diesel-powered vehicles and equipment can be retrofit with new, more effective emission control technologies or retired and replaced with equipment that can greatly accelerate progress in cleaning our air,” the associations write. They urge Pruitt to support DERA “as an important part of the Administration’s support for practical, effective, and voluntary programs that improve the nation’s health and environment.”
Over the last decade, DERA has produced an estimated US$12.6 billion in health savings at a cost of $700 million, according to the Diesel Technology Forum. “EPA’s most recent estimates indicate that the program has upgraded nearly 73,000 vehicles or pieces of equipment while saving over 450 million gallons of fuel,” the letter states. “The agency estimates that total lifetime emission reductions achieved through DERA funding are 14,700 tons of particulate matter and 335,200 tons of nitrogen oxide.”