National organizations that represent state legislatures, county officials and mayors have endorsed the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) and requested that Congress reauthorize the program for another five years.
DERA provides funding to retrofit or replace old school buses and other vehicles. It is set to expire next year, but U.S. Senators Thomas Carper (D-Del.) and George Voinovich (R-Ohio) are drafting legislation to reauthorize it.
In recent weeks, DERA reauthorization has been endorsed at separate national meetings by the National Conference of State Legislatures, the National Association of Counties and the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
“The fact that the three largest national organizations representing these officials support DERA is a tribute to its success over the past five years and the need to continue upgrading the existing 11 million older diesel engines,” said Allen Schaeffer, executive director of the Diesel Technology Forum, a nonprofit organization that promotes clean diesel technologies.
“These officials have seen firsthand the environmental benefits of DERA and understand the important work that still must be done to address air quality issues.”
DERA was created by Congress in 2005.