School districts across the country, including those here in Georgia, often find their budgets spread thin. This does not leave much, if any, extra money available to be concerned with environmental issues. Sometimes, school districts need a little help in order to do what they can to combat pollution — specifically from the buses the kids ride every day during the school year.
The Environmental Protection Agency is taking steps to change that. Numerous school districts across the country are receiving rebates to replace their diesel-fueled buses under the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act. Many school districts support the act, but do not have the funds to replace their buses.
This is why the EPA is providing monetary awards to school districts. For instance, some school districts in Virginia will share in approximately $900,000 out of over $8.7 million the agency is giving to districts in 32 states. Replacing the buses will reduce pollution that can cause adverse health consequences such as lung damage and asthma. Districts with school buses from 2006 and before can either replace the buses or retrofit those manufactured between 1994 and 2006 with fuel operated heaters, closed crankcase ventilation systems and diesel oxidation catalysts. In either case, the reduction in fuel emissions is believed to reduce the instances of health problems.
This is just one effort put forth by the EPA to help combat pollution. Improving the quality of the air people breath remains a goal for state and local governments as well. It may be possible for municipalities, school districts and others to take advantage of federal and state programs such as this one in order to improve the quality of life for everyone by reducing pollution. A Georgia environmental law attorney may be able to assist with the location of and application to these types of programs, which may also help with remaining in compliance with applicable laws.
Source: epa.gov, “EPA Awards $900,000 to Virginia School Districts to Reduce Air Pollution from School Buses”, David Sternberg, March 8, 2018