CARB getting $161M to restart clean truck, bus projects

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The California Air Resources Board said Tuesday, May 26, that it will receive $161 million in the next installment of the 2006 voter-approved Proposition 1B funds for cleaning up emissions from school buses, trucks and port equipment as a result of the State Treasurer’s sale of bonds on Earth Day.

The Goods Movement Emission Reduction Program will receive $90 million, and the Lower-Emission School Bus Program will receive about $71 million. CARB administers both programs, part of a larger $19.93 billion 2006 Highway Safety, Traffic Reduction, Air Quality and Port Security Bond Act. In December 2008, CARB suspended implementation of these programs because of the state’s inability to raise bond funds.

“We are glad to see these critical clean-air programs restarting,” says CARB Chairman Mary D. Nichols. “Californians will have healthier air to breathe in the four trade corridors, and our children will be exposed to fewer toxic emissions from older, dirty school buses.”

CARB says the bond money will be used to:

  • Clean up port trucks in the South Coast, Bay Area and San Diego;
  • Upgrade trucks in the Central Valley and Border Region;
  • Install shore-based electrical power for two ship berths at the Port of Oakland;
  • Replace all pre-1977 school buses operating in California with new, cleaner, safer models; and
  • Replace or retrofit older school buses in the South Coast and San Joaquin Valley.
  • For a full list of funded projects, click here.

    The $1 billion Proposition 1B: Goods Movement Emission Reduction Program is a partnership between CARB and local agencies such as air districts and seaports to reduce air pollution emissions and health risk from freight movement along California’s trade corridors. Local agencies apply to CARB for funding, and those agencies offer financial incentives to owners of equipment used in freight movement to upgrade to cleaner technologies. Projects funded under this program must achieve early or extra emissions reductions to complement CARB rules.

    The $200 million Lower Emission School Bus program is a partnership between CARB, the 35 local air districts and school districts throughout the state, with the goal of reducing school children’s exposure to both cancer-causing and smog-forming pollution. The program provides grant funding for new, safer school buses and air pollution retrofit equipment.