October 16, 2020

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Nearly $4.5 Million To Reduce Air Pollution From Diesel Emissions In New York City And Long Island

Funding Will Replace Existing Polluting Truck, Bus and Industrial Diesel Engines to Promote Clean Air and Reduce Asthma

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, today announced $4,358,000 in federal funding for diesel emissions reduction programs in New York City and Long Island. The funding was allocated through the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) National Grants Program and will be used to replace commuter ferries, school buses, trucks and tractors with less polluting alternatives. Additionally, the funding will add dollars to New York State’s DERA program.

“Reducing harmful diesel emissions – which worsen climate change and contribute to asthma and other lung ailments – by upgrading commuter ferries, school buses, trucks and tractors with cleaner technology is another step in the right direction to reduce air pollution, protect our environment and improve the health of our communities,” said Senator Schumer. “I’m proud to support this critical federal funding to reduce harmful emissions from New York City and Long Island’s commuter and cargo vehicles. I’ll continue to fight for funding for diesel emissions reduction programs and other environmental protection measures needed to improve the air we breathe, to attack climate change and to protect human health." 

“Access to clean air is a right that we must fight to protect,” said Senator Gillibrand. “By investing in clean and modern technology, we will reduce pollution and congestion throughout New York City and Long Island, protect the health of our communities, and create new economic opportunities. I will continue fighting to ensure New York State maintains its strong tradition of environmental stewardship and works toward a healthier, more sustainable future for all.”

Senator Gillibrand has long supported the DERA program as a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. She is an original cosponsor of S. 747, the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act of 2019, a bipartisan bill to reauthorize the DERA program through Fiscal Year 2024. This legislation passed the Senate earlier this year as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). 

Funding Recipients listed below: 

Recipient

Purpose

Amount Awarded 

New York DERA Program

Implementation of diesel emissions reduction programs

$588,000

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) 

Replacement of 12 cargo handling terminal tractors

$420,000

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) 

Replacement of up to 50 model year 2009 or older short-haul trucks

$1,250,000

Bay Shore, Brentwood, and Central Islip School Districts

Replacement of six diesel-powered school buses with 100% electric-powered school buses 

$1,100,000

The Connecticut Maritime Foundation, Inc.

Replacement of the existing marine diesel engines on the M/V Straits Express commuter ferry 

$1,000,000