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State program provides school districts money to replace aging buses
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) just announced $6.2M funding under their newly expanded Clean School Bus Program. The Clean School Bus Program open now will provide grants to public and charter schools as well as school transportation companies statewide to install exhaust retrofits as well as replace older diesel school buses with new school buses. One of those options includes replacement of older buses with cleaner-burning propane autogas school buses.
The Propane Council of Texas is excited about a new opportunity to put cleaner school buses on Texas roads. According to the EPA, diesel exhaust is exceptionally harmful to children because their lungs are not fully developed. Not only that, but these older diesel buses produce higher amounts of nitrogen oxides (NOx), which is a greenhouse gas that contributes to smog, ground level ozone and is associated with adverse health effects. Cleaner-burning propane school buses are available from top school bus manufacturers.
“Texas is home to over 26,000 pre-2007 diesel school buses. If school districts would replace all the pre-2007 school buses, Texas could reduce (NOx) by 7.5M pounds a year,” states Propane Council of Texas Executive Director, Bill Van Hoy.
School districts can replace a pre-2007 school bus with propane school bus and get between $36,500 -$52,500 dependent on the passenger capacity. Funding is first come, first serve with a limit of funding 5 school buses per district.
The Clean School Bus Grant guidelines and application can be found on the TCEQ website at www.terpgrants.org.
School districts interested to switch to propane school can contact the Propane Council of Texas for information at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (800)325-7427.
About the Propane Council of Texas The Propane Council of Texas is (ProCOT) is a 501 (c) 3 educational and marketing foundation. Our objective is consumer education, highlighting the benefits of home-grown propane and promoting clean-burning propane technologies like propane school buses.
The American Lung Association (although it is its Midwest Chapter) is looking for partners no matter where they are in the country for the EPA DERA grant. The American Lung Association internal deadline is this Friday, April 1, 2016 (which is slightly flexible). Fleet partners will be end-users (fleets: either public or private) that operate in non-attainment areas (Dallas/Fort Worth , Houston-Galveston, El Paso or other non-attainment areas in across the country). Contact the American Lung Association if you have a fleet or fleets interested in replacing a dirty diesel vehicle with a cleaner-burning propane vehicle (e.g. bobtails, school buses).
Interested parties, please contact:
Vice President Environmental Health
American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest
3000 Kelly Lane | Springfield, IL 62711
General: 217.787.5864 | Direct: 217. 241.9027 | Fax: 217.787.5916
www.lungum.org | Angela.Tin@lung.org
As a reminder, the DFW Clean Cities has a similar grant that is for vehicles transporting goods e.g. propane bobtails and propane forklifts, click here for the North Texas grant information.
Photo compliments of www.freedigitalimages.net
Recently, the North Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) announced a call for clean vehicle projects. This grant opportunity is for the replacement of dirty-diesel vehicles (MY 1994-2006) with a newer cleaner diesel or alternative fuel vehicles like propane-powered vehicles. These are for vehicles/on-road equipment transporting goods or a commodity. Propane is viewed as a commodity by NCTCOG so bobtails that meet the qualifications could be eligible.
The grant is awarded will pay for 25% of the cost of the replacement vehicle or 35% of the cost of the vehicle if it meets the CARB low NOx option.
Eligible vehicles/equipment must operate within one of the ten counties currently designated as non-attainment for the pollutant ozone (Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Tarrant and Wise).
There is no minimum amount of vehicles that someone has to apply for. A marketer could apply for one. At this time, they do not know if it will be competitive, it depends on how many applications they receive. Sometimes they have received more applications than funding they are eligible for and sometimes they have received no applications what so ever.
Application materials must be received in-hand no later than 5pm Central Standard Time, on Friday, April 15, 2016, to Lori Clark, Principal Air Quality Planner, North Central Texas Council of Governments, 616 Six Flags Drive, Arlington, Texas 76011.
For application materials and additional details, see www.nctcog.org/aqfunding.
For additional information, interest parties can contact the grant administrator, Lori Clark at email@example.com or at 817-695-9232.
The Propane Council of Texas Examines the Many Funding Opportunities to Go Green
Right now is the perfect time for school districts to switch to cleaner-burning propane-powered school buses. There is a multitude of funding opportunities that can help school districts replace their buses with a greener option from state to federal funds. Below we focus on school bus specific grants.
All the below grants are eligible statewide (except the below mentioned HGAC regional grant):
Alternative Fuel Initiatives School Bus Rebate Program
Last week, the State Energy Conservation Office (SECO) announced a competitive grant for smaller, rural school districts. Texas tax-payer supported school districts may be eligible up to $8,000 per bus up to 10 buses. Submission deadline is October 31, 2015.
DERA 2015 School Bus Replacement
Additionally, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) just announced $7 million in funding for school buses through the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA). Applicants may list up to ten buses for replacements on each application. These buses must be powered by a model year 2006 or older engine. EPA will pay between $15,000 and $25,000 per bus, depending on vehicle size. The bus being replaced must be scrapped and permanently disabled. The deadline to apply is October 30, 2015.
Alternative Fuels Clean School Bus Replacement Programs
Through a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Statewide Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEP), both the Railroad Commission and the Texas PTA have funding for school districts to replace older diesel school buses that are 2002 or older with new alternative fuel buses like propane. There are a couple differences between the two programs.
The Railroad Commission Program requires school districts to be NEW to propane. Texas PTA does not require a school to be new to propane; however, they do require the school district receiving the bus to have one school belonging to the Texas PTA.
Both programs require that the buses be scrapped. Funding is cyclical as money comes in as TCEQ accesses fines and violators choose which Statewide Supplemental Environmental Project they want their fines to go to.
The Railroad Commission is actively seeking school districts that are looking to make the switch so they can call them when funds come in to help districts make the transition.
Contact information for the grant administrators of the both SEP’s are below:
Railroad Commission contact: Art Valladares 512-463-7359 firstname.lastname@example.org
Texas PTA contact: Mayra Guevara (512) 320-9825 email@example.com
Houston-Galveston Area Council SEP
Houston-Galveston Area Council also implements a TCEQ SEP to help replace 2010 or older buses with new, lower emission buses that meet the most recent EPA emissions standards.
School district must operate the bus 75 % of their time in Harris, Fort Bend, Waller, Montgomery, Liberty, Chambers, Galveston or Brazoria counties. Buses must be scrapped.
Please call (832) 681-2578 for more information.
The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) has opened the Clean Fleets North Texas 2015 Call for Projects to help to upgrade to cleaner-burning options like propane. Applications are being accepted through October 23, 2015. The grant opportunity will provide approximately $2.5 million in funds on competitive basis for private and public fleets (includes school districts) with operations in the 10-County Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) Ozone Non-attainment area.
- Up to 80 percent of incremental cost will be awarded minus scrap value to eligible projects on a competitive basis.
- Project types eligible for grant funding include qualifying new purchase, replacement, repower, retrofit, or engine conversion
- All projects must achieve a reduction in NOX emissions.
- Applicants must adopt the Clean Fleet Policy prior to the application deadline.
- Again, this is a competitive grant, not all submitted projects will be funded
A grant workshop will be conducted on September 3, 2015 at the NCTCOG offices at 2:00 PM in the William J. Pitstick Executive Board Room. The grant application and guidelines will be reviewed and any questions will be addressed.
In addition, NCTCOG is seeking information on refueling or recharging infrastructure projects desired by fleets; while these projects are not eligible for grant funds at this time, staff will use this information to evaluate potential future opportunities for assistance.
AUSTIN — The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) announced that grant funding is being made available to eligible individuals, businesses and government entities to continue the development of a network of Texas alternative fuel stations—including clean, domestically produced propane autogas, the world’s most popular alternative fuel.
The Alternative Fueling Facilities Program (AFFP) grant is part of the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP), and is offered to entities that intend to build, own and operate alternative fuel fueling stations. Nineteen Texas counties in ozone non-attainment areas are eligible, including the Dallas-Fort Worth area, the El Paso area and the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria area.
Propane autogas is a clean, cost-efficient and environmentally friendly alternative to diesel and gasoline. Light- and medium-duty fleets that switch to propane autogas save money on fuel costs, reduce harmful emissions and experience less frequent vehicle maintenance. Across the state, more and more fleets are choosing to fuel with propane autogas, including businesses, local governments and more than 75 independent school districts.
“Currently, there are more than 700 propane autogas fueling stations in Texas,” said Jackie Mason, Education & Marketing Director for the Propane Council of Texas (ProCOT). “But as propane autogas continues to become widely adopted across the state, having even more fueling locations available would be beneficial to both private and public organizations.”
Refueling with cleaner-burning propane autogas is comparable to refueling with gasoline or diesel, making the transition easy for fleets. The only difference is propane’s sealed connection—meaning no fuel spillage or ground contamination. Propane dispensers can be as simple as a pump and a tank to as advanced as a state-of-the-art dispenser with credit and fleet card capabilities.
The AFFP grant period opened on November 15, 2013 and will close on February 18, 2014. While the grant is available to both public and private entities, the station must be open to the public Monday through Friday for at least eight hours per day. The grants can fund up to $600,000 or 50 percent of eligible expenses of the fueling station; the grants offset some of the cost of either the construction of a new fueling station, or the substantial reconstruction of existing facilities to dispense alternative fuel.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is hosting grant application workshops this December. For more information on the grant program, the application process or the workshops, please visit terpgrants.org or call 800-919-TERP (8377).
About the Propane Council of Texas
The Propane Council of Texas (ProCOT) is a non-profit 501 (c) 3 dedicated to educating the public and the propane industry on safety and on the newest clean-burning propane technologies. ProCOT is the state entity that represents the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC), which was authorized by the U.S. Congress with the passage of the Propane Education and Research Act (PERA) of 1996. The program is funded with small fees from the propane industry and goes to fund several safety programs, as well as the commercialization of new propane technology. Visit procot.org for more information.
Are you considering converting a Houston-area fleet to clean-burning propane autogas? The Houston Galveston Area Council (HGAC) has announced grant funding for light and heavy duty vehicles, as well as refueling infrastructure, to reduce harmful emissions in eight Texas counties. Propane autogas is eligible, but not specifically listed in guidelines.
If your fleet operates in one of these counties — Harris, Fort Bend, Waller, Montgomery, Liberty, Chambers, Galveston and Brazoria — you may be eligible for the program. The grants are available for private and public fleet vehicles that have accelerated turnover. Bi-fuel and conversions may be eligible. Engine destruction is required for the vehicle you are replacing, and quarterly reporting is also required. Infrastructure grants are available for private or public refueling stations.
Please note that fleets may not begin conversion until they have a signed contract from HGAC or they may be deemed ineligible.
There are no deadlines for this funding. To apply or to download the guidelines, please visit HGAC’s website. If you have additional questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 713-993-2488.
Are you considering converting a forklift, school bus or bobtail to propane? The Alternative Fuels Research and Education Division (AFRED) of the Railroad Commission of Texas can help. AFRED has a new $6 million grant program to help companies replace their older forklifts and medium- and heavy-duty diesel vehicles with ultra, low-emission propane–fueled equipment. The grant program, which will produce significant air-quality benefits, is funded by the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP) through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).
Since 2005, AFRED has awarded $39.5 million in grants to Texas companies and school districts, and reduced emissions of smog-forming nitrogen oxide by nearly 5,000 tons. To be eligible for the grants, new equipment must meet the latest emissions standards and operate in one of the 43 counties designated by the TCEQ as having substandard air quality. The grant amount averages $9,500.
For more information, contact AFRED’s Pat Wilson at (512) 475-2911 or click here.