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27 November 2018

Hawaii wins more than $400,000 in EPA Grants

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $411,578 in Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) grants to Hawaii to help curb pollution from diesel vehicle sources.

The EPA’s West Coast Collaborative administers the DERA programme. This partnership, which combines the EPA’s Pacific Southwest and Pacific Northwest Regions, utilises public and private funds in a bid to reduce emissions.

The Hawaii Department of Health (HDOH) intends to use the grant to replace two diesel transit buses with battery-powered electric vehicles.

Dr. Keith Kawaoka, HDOH deputy director for environmental health, says: “In addition to reducing diesel emissions, this project will lower greenhouse gases in parallel with Hawaii’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2045.”

In June, David Ige, governor of Hawaii, signed three bills to make the state carbon neutral by 2045.

“Climate change is real and we’re seeing its impacts right now in our island state. Taken together, this suite of bills establishes policies and programs that acknowledge and address this reality,” says Ige.

The DERA funds will be combined with a further $274,385 in Volkswagen as part of its Clean Air Act Civil Settlement.

Combating greenhouse gases is also a priority for bus manufacturer Build Your Dreams (BYD). In May, the company joined forces with US hybrid, a designer of powertrain components, to develop a hydrogen fuel cell battery-electric bus to operate at Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport.

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