Yellowstone-Teton Clean Cities works to connect fleets, businesses, governments, and individuals to funding opportunities, enabling more alternative fuel vehicles on the roads and supporting additional alternative fueling stations. YTCC has administered over $1 million in funding over the last 10 years and would like to assist you in adding to that amount.
VOLKSWAGEN SETTLEMENT FUNDS:
In 2016, the United States, on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), filed a complainant against Volkswagen due to violations of the Clean Air Act. The allegations were that certain Volkswagen vehicles made between 2009 and 2016 were producing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions significantly greater then the act allows. The United States and California entered into three partial settlements with Volkswagen to correct this issue. The first partial settlement required Volkswagen to buy back or modify the emission systems of 85% of their violating vehicles. As well as, be held accountable for the excess Nox emissions by providing a $2.7 billion environmental mitigation trust. Also, Volkswagen was required to invest in and encourage usage of zero-emission vehicles and infrastructure, with a $2 billion ZEV investment program. The second settlement required Volkswagen to add another $225 million to the mitigation trust fund. Lastly, the third partial settlement addressed how to prevent future violations by the company. The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) finalized the Volkswagen Mitigation Plan in 2018. In Yellowstone-Teton Clean Cities’ Coalition the states of Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming have access to this funding.
Montana DEQ Announces New Funding Opportunities:
The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is celebrating National Drive Electric Week with new funding opportunities to help curb nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions with clean transportation. The grants are available for public and private entities and match funds to help make clean transportation affordable.
The first funding opportunity, the Clean Truck, Bus & Airport Equipment Program, matches funds to replace older diesel trucks, buses or airport ground support vehicles with battery electric, alternate fuel or diesel vehicles. Examples of types of vehicles for this funding opportunity can include garbage trucks, street sweepers, bucket trucks, buses, or vehicles that service aircrafts between flights. Applications for this opportunity are due January 14, 2022.
The second funding opportunity is the Clean School Bus Program that applies to school districts statewide and matches funds to replace older diesel school buses with newer diesel, gasoline, propane, low NOx certified or battery electric buses. This opportunity has funded 23 diesel buses and 8 propane buses at school districts across the state since January of 2020. Applications for this opportunity are due November 15, 2021 with project completion by August of 2022.
The grants are funded through the Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust Agreement and EPA’s Diesel Emissions Reduction Act, respectively. For more information and to view the request for applications visit: Deq.mt.gov/energy/programs/
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES:
DOE Announces New 2.5 Million Prize to Support Diversity in Innovation:
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today launched the new Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize that will award up to $2.5 million in cash prizes to groups and organizations that support entrepreneurship and innovation in communities historically underserved in climate and energy technology funding. The Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize supports the Biden-Harris Administration’s Justice40 initiative to put environmental and economic justice at the center of America’s transition to a net-zero economy by 2050.
The Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize will be distributed in two phases. In Phase One, up to 10 winners will receive an initial cash prize of $200,000 each, with the opportunity to receive additional awards. Phase One awardees will also receive in-kind mentorship and other support services and be eligible to participate in Phase Two of the prize. In Phase Two, up to three teams will be awarded cash prizes from a prize pool of $500,000. The prize is open for submissions for Phase One for the next 150 days, closing Friday February 25, 2022.
Learn more about DOE’s Innovation Energy Prize and how to get involved.
Communities LEAP (Local Energy Action Partner):
On September 15, U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm introduced Communities LEAP (Local Energy Action Program). This new pilot initiative will support communities currently experiencing either direct environmental justice impacts or direct economic impacts from a shift away from historical reliance on fossil fuels. DOE will provide technical assistance services valued at up to $16 million to support 24-36 communities to develop their own community-driven clean energy transition approach.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today published a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) to apply for $1 billion in Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 discretionary grant funding through the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grants
Projects for RAISE funding will be evaluated based on merit criteria that include safety, environmental sustainability, quality of life, economic competitiveness, state of good repair, innovation, and partnership. Within these criteria, the Department will prioritize projects that can demonstrate improvements to racial equity, reduce impacts of climate change and create good-paying jobs.
For this round of RAISE grants, the maximum grant award is $25 million, and no more than $100 million can be awarded to a single State, as specified in the appropriations act. Up to $30 million will be awarded to planning grants, including at least $10 million to Areas of Persistent Poverty.
A series of webinars will open for registration on April 19, 2021: https://www.transportation.gov/RAISEgrants/outreach
EPA’s 2021 School Bus Rebates Open:
This week the US Environmental Protection Agency announced two funding opportunities for school bus fleets that serve public schools: the 2021 American Rescue Plan (ARP) Electric School Bus Rebates, and the 2021 DERA School Bus Rebate Program. EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality is accepting applications nationwide for rebates to assist in replacing older, dirtier diesel school buses with new school buses. To learn more about each opportunity visit the new 2021 ARP Electric School Bus Rebates website for a table showing the differences between the two rebate programs.
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY VEHICLE TECHNOLOGIES OFFICE: https://www.energy.gov/eere/vehicles/vehicle-technologies-office
ALTERNATIVE FUELS DATA CENTER LAWS and INCENTIVES: https://afdc.energy.gov/laws