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For Release: Monday, March 30, 2020

DEC Announces $9.8 Million in Volkswagen Settlement Funds to Support New York City's Clean Truck Program

Funding for New York City Department of Transportation to Replace Older, Dirtier Diesel Trucks with New, Cleaner Trucks

"Clean Transportation NY" Plan for VW Settlement Funds Invests Resources to Reduce Pollution and Bolster Clean Transportation in Environmental Justice Areas

Supports New York's Goal to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions 40 Percent by 2030 and Economy-Wide Carbon Neutrality by 2050

State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced that more than $9.8 million is now available to replace older, dirtier diesel-powered trucks in New York City with newer, less polluting trucks, which will help improve air quality, reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change, and promote investment in cleaner fuel technologies, among other benefits. As part of the state's $127.7 million allocation of the federal Volkswagen Settlement, the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) will administer approximately $9.8 million to fund medium and heavy-duty replacement trucks with an emphasis on all-electric, zero tailpipe emission trucks. Funding will also be available for alternative fueled and low-emission diesel trucks. The New York City Clean Truck Program will focus its truck replacement projects in certain New York City Industrial Business Zones located near communities that have historically been subject to a disproportionate amount of diesel exhaust emissions.

DEC Commissioner Seggos said, "Reducing emissions from the transportation sector is essential to our efforts to combat climate and this important funding will help remove the worst polluters from our roads, especially in communities already overburdened by pollution. I commend Governor Cuomo for his ongoing leadership to improve air quality, reduce emissions, and create a sustainable future for New York's transportation industry."

Funding is available to replace existing diesel-powered medium and heavy-duty trucks with model year 1992-2009 engines. Under the settlement, these trucks must be permanently removed from service and scrapped. Truck replacements are targeted at privately owned trucks that service New York City Industrial Business Zones located in or adjacent to Potential Environmental Justice Areas (PEJAs). DEC considers PEJAs to be communities of color or low-income communities that experience a disproportionate share of environmental harms such as vehicle emissions and pollution.

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) President and CEO Alicia Barton said, "Transitioning off of fossil fuels and lowering greenhouse gas emissions are at the heart of New York's plan to create a more resilient future for all New Yorkers and reduce the impact of climate change. Investing the settlement funds to replace dirtier vehicles with clean, efficient vehicles will deliver benefits to communities across the state and move us closer to achieving critical climate and clean energy milestones as outlined in Governor Cuomo's strategy for economy-wide carbon neutrality."

New York Power Authority (NYPA) President and CEO Gil C. Quiniones said, "These clean truck funds will accelerate New York State's progress in achieving Governor Cuomo's vision of a clean energy economy by moving us one step closer to a zero-emission transportation sector. Exhaust from heavy-duty trucks is a major contributor to high pollution levels. The clean vehicle replacements paired with new cleaner transportation infrastructure investments will go a long way toward addressing the challenges of climate change while also ensuring that residents in communities close to high traffic routes will have reduced emissions in their neighborhoods."

New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) Marie Therese Dominguez said, "Governor Cuomo is leading the way with climate and clean energy policies. Today's clean truck investments will help lessen the state's dependence on non-renewable fuels, reduce greenhouse gases and improve the air we breathe, all part of a comprehensive strategy for a cleaner, greener New York."

Truck replacement funds will be administered through the NYCDOT's Clean Truck Program to provide point-of-sale rebates to reduce the cost for local goods movement businesses that want to purchase new, clean electric, alternative-fueled trucks and clean diesel trucks. The rebate will reduce the incremental cost of lower polluting trucks and help increase the number of all-electric, alternate fueled and low emissions diesel trucks on New York's roadways while removing older, higher polluting diesel-powered trucks through a scrappage requirement.

Michael Replogle, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, New York City Department of Transportation, said, "Many low income and minority New Yorkers suffer disproportionately higher rates of asthma and other adverse health effects caused by dirty diesel truck pollution in their neighborhoods. The addition of new VW settlement funding will help NYC DOT expand the Hunt's Point Clean Trucks Program --now renamed the NYC Clean Trucks Program -- so it can serve other Industrial Business Zones in the City. The expanded program will speed the transition to zero or low emission freight movement, supporting the City's climate change, public health, and green economic development goals, with benefits for all New Yorkers."

Truck owners that do not qualify for the New York City Clean Trucks Program because their trucks are not domiciled or operated in the city's Industrial Business Zones may still qualify for equivalent incentives provided through the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) New York Truck Voucher Incentive Program (NYTVIP) (leaves DEC's website).

At the Governor's direction, DEC, in concert with NYSERDA, NYPA, DOT, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and others, developed Clean Transportation NY - New York's plan to strategically invest the Volkswagen settlement resources for maximum benefit and to build on New York's national leadership on clean energy and climate change. The funds were secured to mitigate damages from the Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal through the federal settlement with Volkswagen. The state's strategically leveraged investment of settlement funds is anticipated to result in at least $300 million of clean vehicles and infrastructure on New York's roadways. The transportation sector is currently the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in New York, representing approximately 34 percent of the state's total emissions. The current status of New York State's implementation of Clean Transportation NY projects can be found at DEC's website.

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