Gov. Steve Beshear announced this week that the Kentucky Division for Air Quality (DAQ) has awarded Crittenden County Board of Education $80,000 to reduce diesel emissions from its school bus fleet.
The funds were made available through the federal Environmental Protection Agency’s Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA).
“I applaud Crittenden County Board of Education for its leadership in building a greener fleet, including Kentucky’s first propane-powered bus for student transportation,” said Gov. Beshear. “Reducing diesel emissions from school buses means cleaner air for our most precious resource – our kids.”
The project will replace one 1992 model diesel school bus with a 2014 model school bus powered by propane autogas. Propane autogas burns cleaner than diesel, producing fewer smog-producing hydrocarbons and virtually eliminating emissions of particulate matter. Particulate matter is linked to increased risk of stroke, heart attack and other serious health problems.
“The Crittenden County Board of Education is excited about the opportunity to pilot the first propane school bus in the Commonwealth,” said Crittenden County Schools Superintendent Rachel Yarbrough. “The Kentucky Clean Diesel Grant awarded to the Crittenden County Schools creates a new energy efficient pathway that will benefit our students and the community.”
The project will also retrofit an additional 14 diesel school buses with emission-control technologies, reducing tailpipe emissions of particulate matter by nearly 50 percent.
“Retrofitting school buses can make a real difference for cleaner air,” said DAQ director John Lyons. “Buses travel on a large percentage of an area’s roads, making frequent stops and starts. Emissions can also travel inside the school bus each time the doors are opened, so these retrofits will benefit the health of drivers and students on those buses.”
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