Mecklenburg County Air Quality (MCAQ) announced today that applications are being accepted for more than $700,000 of competitive grant funds through the GRADE+ (Grants to Replace Aging Diesel Engines) project. Public and private companies owning non-road diesel equipment or heavy-duty diesel trucks wishing to replace their old equipment or engines with newer, less-polluting models may be eligible and are encouraged to apply for these competitive grants.
Eligible engines include non-road and stationary diesel equipment rated 25 hp and larger, and/or on-road heavy-duty diesel trucks classified with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of class 2b (8,501 pounds) and larger. The maximum grant amount per company/organization/proprietorship could be $150,000.
GRADE+ provides reimbursement for up to 25% of the cost of vehicle/equipment replacement and up to 75% of the cost of engine repowers. Funding for GRADE+ is provided by the US Environmental Protection Agency through the Southeastern Diesel Collaborative, and the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.
NOx, the primary pollutant responsible for the formation of ozone, is produced by the diesel combustion process. Currently, the Charlotte/Metrolina region is in violation of the national health-based standard for ozone. Newer diesel engines mean a lot less toxins going into the air, according to Leslie Rhodes, Mecklenburg County Air Quality program manager.
“Since 2007, Mecklenburg County Air Quality has awarded 165 GRADE grants expected to achieve over 518 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx) pollution reduction in the Charlotte/Metrolina region,” Rhodes said.
To apply for a GRADE+ grant, to review the complete list of eligibility requirements, or to simply learn more about this opportunity, please visit the GRADE+ website at http://www.gradeplus.net. If you have additional questions about GRADE+ or the application process, please contact Mecklenburg County Air Quality at 704-336-5420 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org