HARRISBURG >> Governor Tom Wolf announced on August 1 that 34 cleaner energy transportation projects, including two in Bucks County, will receive $8,489,844 in Driving PA Forward grants and rebates.
Funded by Pennsylvania’s share of the settlement with Volkswagen Group of America for cheating on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) emissions tests, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is committing funding for an extensive range of clean energy transportation projects on our roads, at schools, and at marine ports and airports.
“The funding awarded from the VW emission cheating scandal is helping Pennsylvania reduce transportation pollution statewide and will help continue our efforts to improve air quality throughout the commonwealth,” said Governor Wolf.
By replacing older, polluting engines with new technologies, the projects over their lifetimes are expected to prevent emissions of 503 tons of nitrogen oxides (NOx), 130 tons of carbon monoxide, 238 tons of carbon dioxide, 59 tons of hydrocarbons, 30 tons of fine particulate matter, and a half-ton of coarse particulate matter.
“This comprehensive approach to reducing emissions will help improve Pennsylvanians’ health and advance Governor Wolf’s goal of protecting the state from further climate change impacts,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell.
These emissions contribute to climate change and ground-level ozone, or smog, which the EPA has shown can have negative health impacts, including asthma attacks and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Driving PA Forward launched in 2018 with the goal of permanently reducing NOx emissions in Pennsylvania by 27,700 tons by supporting clean transportation projects with funding from the commonwealth’s $118.5 million settlement with Volkswagen. Six projects received $580,000 in the first set of awards, announced last year. In this second set of awards, the following recipients will receive grants and rebates:
- SYSCO Leasing LLC: A $432,320 grant to replace 24 diesel Class 8 trucks with new diesel trucks used in food and food-related products distribution.
- Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission: A $2,093,042 grant for a joint project with the City of Philadelphia to replace five diesel trash trucks with five compressed natural gas (CNG) trash trucks and Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority to replace five older diesel service vehicles with new ones to operate in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties.
- Chargepoint, Inc.: A $254,191 grant to purchase, install, and maintain two DC fast chargers at a Burger King at 4100 New Falls Road, Bristol.
The two newest Driving PA Forward programs opened this summer and are available for businesses, non-profits, and government agencies in Pennsylvania. In total, $6 million is available through the new programs for the purchase and installation of ocean-going vessel shore power systems and for repowering or replacing older diesel large forklifts and various cargo handling equipment with electric upgrades. Application deadlines are in October and November.
Funding remains available in three programs that opened last year: $2.4 million for Class 8 trucks and transit buses, $1 million for Level 2 EV charging, and $1.5 million for DC fast charging and hydrogen fueling. Application deadlines are in September and October.
Funding programs for clean diesel engines and class 4-7 trucks, port drayage trucks, school buses, and shuttle buses are closed but expected to reopen in early 2020. A new grant program for marine and rail freight movers is anticipated to open this fall.