The California Air Resources Board approved $42 million in AB 118 Air Quality Improvement Program projects that will accelerate the commercialization of on-road and off-road clean engine technologies.
Beginning this fall, Californians will be able to use these grants toward the purchase of zero-emission or hybrid engine technologies. All interested Californians can participate in the following funding assistance programs to purchase new commercially available technologies for the 2009-10 fiscal year by contacting ARB. The four projects are:
- $25 million for hybrid trucks and buses;
- $5 million for zero-emission and plug-in hybrid cars and motorcycles;
- $2 million for lawn and garden equipment that will augment air districts existing replacement programs; and
- $1.3 million for zero-emission agricultural equipment.
The Air Quality Improvement Program will also fund demonstration projects that will focus on promising technologies not yet in wide production. The five projects are:
- $2 million for the production of locomotives that emit lower amounts of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter;
- $1 million for hybrid marine vessels;
- $3 million for zero-emission or plug-in hybrid transit and school buses in addition to retrofits;
- $2 million for hybrid off-road equipment and retrofits such as vehicles used in construction, mining and airport ground support; and,
- $1 million for hybrid off-road agricultural equipment and retrofits including tractors and agricultural pumps.
Also approved were guidelines to delineate how ARB will run this new financial assistance program to ensure efficiency and public input. The guidelines establish requirements for such areas as program administration, oversight and accountability, reporting, and procedures for developing project solicitation and project selection.
Governor Schwarzenegger provided funding for alternative fuels and clean vehicle technologies by signing AB 118 into law in October 2007. This week, the California Energy Commission adopted an investment plan that provides $176 million over the next two years to fund programs that promote these new technologies. (Earlier post.) Smog abatement, vehicle and vessel registration fees will pay for these programs.