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What is Clean Diesel?

More efficient engines, cleaner fuel, and advanced emissions control technology have dramatically reduced harmful air pollution from today's diesel buses, trucks, and other heavy-duty engines. The Kentucky Clean Diesel Grant Program provides financial support for projects that protect human health and improve air quality by reducing harmful emissions from diesel engines. This program includes grants and rebates funded under the federal Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA).


2018 Clean Diesel Grant Program


(April 18, 2019) - Five Kentucky school districts will receive $231,237 to reduce diesel emissions from their school bus fleets, the Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) announced today. The funds were made available through the Kentucky Division for Air Quality’s Clean Diesel Program and the federal Diesel Emissions Reduction Act.

School districts in Bullitt, Jefferson, Franklin, Letcher and Green counties will use the funds to replace older-model, diesel school buses with new diesel buses that will emit 98 percent less particulate matter and 90 percent less nitrogen oxide than the older buses they are replacing.

“These new, cleaner buses will make a difference,” said Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary Charles Snavely. “Students in these districts will breathe easier, and their communities will benefit from cleaner air.”

Exposure to diesel exhaust can cause serious health problems like asthma, and can worsen existing heart and lung disease. Children and the elderly are especially vulnerable.

The five school districts will replace a total of 10 diesel school buses. The awards to each school district are: Bullitt, $25,524, Jefferson, $54,621, Franklin, $72,122, Letcher, $26,102, and Green, $52,867. While diesel engines manufactured today are cleaner than ever, tightening school budgets mean older, diesel buses that emit high levels of particulate matter and nitrogen oxide pollution may continue to operate for decades before they are replaced.

Past Funding Awards 


2014 Funding

Crittenden County Board of Education was awarded approximately $95,000 to replace four old unretrofitted diesel school buses with four new propane autogas school buses. Crittenden County obtained the first propaned-powered bus for student transportation in the state last year and is thrilled with the cost savings and emissions reductions. The new propane buses produce 98 percent less NOx emissions and 100 percent less particulate matter emissions than the old diesel buses they are replacing. The addition of the four new propane buses will also save the school district an estimated $13,000 in fuel and maintenance in the upcoming school year alone.

2012 Funding

Crittenden County used about $70,000 to retrofit 14 school buses with diesel oxidation catalysts (DOCs) and closed crankcase ventilation (CCV) systems and to fund part of the cost of replacing a 1992 diesel bus with a 2014 propane school bus – the first in the state!  Louisville Metro Government used about $50,000 to retrofit two additional refuse haulers with diesel particulate filters (DPF) and purchase a DPF control panel, continuing their project from past years.

2010-11 Funding

Louisville Metro Government received $425,880 in these two years of clean diesel funding to retrofit 18 refuse haulers with DPFs and CCV systems.

2009 Funding

Two projects were awarded a total of $235,000. The first of these was a truck replacement and idle-reduction project with an independent owner-operator long-haul trucking operation. The second was implemented by Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, which led to the retrofit of 13 refuse haulers in the fleet.
In the spring of 2009, DAQ received $1.73 million in Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) funding through the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and the division chose to utilize this funding to expand 2008’s Kentucky Clean School Bus Grant Program.  Twenty-two school districts reduced diesel emissions in their districts through the installation of emission control devices in their bus fleets. The funded school districts included Ashland Independent, Corbin Independent, Daviess County, Elizabethtown Independent, Floyd County, Frankfort Independent, Franklin County, Gallatin County, Grayson County, Jefferson County, Lincoln County, Livingston County, Madison County, Marion County, Montgomery County, Owsley County, Pike County, Pulaski County, Somerset Independent, Spencer County, Taylor County and Warren County. In addition to the bus retrofits performed, each school district also implemented an idle-reduction policy in their school bus fleet. The division encouraged this as a component of participation in the Clean School Bus Grant Program, and DAQ staff provided educational materials, templates and support for the adoption and implementation of these policies.

2008 Funding

During the inaugural year of the Kentucky Clean School Bus Grant Program, DAQ awarded $196,000 in DERA funds to six school districts in Kentucky to help reduce emissions in their districts through the installation of DOCs and CCV systems on their school buses. The following counties received funding: Bell, Boone, Fayette, Franklin, Jefferson and Paducah Independent Schools.