South Coast Affiliate Launches ‘Unprecedented’ Two-Year Program:
‘New Funding to Improve Southern California’s Air Quality and Health’
The MSRC affiliate of California’s South Coast Air Quality Management District is readying a two-year program backed by “an unprecedented $38.5 million for innovative projects and programs in the South Coast region to help reduce harmful emissions from vehicles.”
MSRC program solicitations will be released in the early fall.
In addition to SCAQMD, the Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee includes representatives from the transportation agencies of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties as well as the Southern California Association of Governments, a designated regional rideshare agency, and the California Air Resources Board.
Two Years to Allow More to Participate
“This is the largest amount of funding and the most diverse Work Program we have ever had,” said MSRC chair Greg Pettis said in a release.
His organization’s new two-year Work Program will fund five broad areas, focusing on new or upgraded alternative fuel vehicles, alternative fuel infrastructure, and transportation control measures.
“We did extensive outreach last summer to those who are working on clean transportation issues to ask them how we could help get their clean air projects off the ground,” Pettis said. “We developed these Work Program categories to reflect what is most needed in our communities to clean up the air from mobile sources.
“For this funding cycle,” Pettis said, “we created a two-year Work Program in order to offer more funding and provide more opportunities for people to apply.”
- At $11 million, the Local Government Match Program has the largest targeted funding amount of any of the program areas. Incentives are available for local agencies that use their AB 2766 funds, which come from a vehicle registration surcharge directed to cities and counties to fund transportation-related projects that reduce air pollution. The Local Government Match Program will fund alternative fuel infrastructure projects, electric vehicle charging stations, and medium and heavy-duty alternative fuel vehicles. This year, bicycle infrastructure, such as creating bike lanes, is included as a new project category.
- The Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Program has $7.5 million reserved for new and expanded refueling facilities for compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG) and L/CNG fuels. To generate even more clean air benefits, additional funding is offered for facilities that utilize CNG produced from renewable sources and for stations that are publicly accessible.
- The Transportation Control Measures Program is targeting $7.5 million for projects aimed at curbing single-occupancy vehicle use in order to cut down on traffic congestion and reduce emissions. Eligible projects include traffic signal synchronization and “first mile-last mile” projects with a bicycle focus, designed to get commuters to and from their final destination when they take public transit.
- The Off-Road Vehicle Program has $7 million reserved for three project categories: advanced low-emission off-road construction equipment technologies including hybrid-electric, hybrid-hydraulic, and zero-emission equipment; airlines and cargo handling facilities at major southland airports to acquire zero-emission ground support equipment and install charging infrastructure to support this equipment; and zero-emission cargo handling equipment for marine terminal operators.
- The On-Road Vehicle Program offers $5.5 million for new school bus purchases and the acquisition of zero-emission and near zero-emission medium heavy-duty trucks in the 14,001 to 26,000 gross vehicle weight rating category.
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Source: MSRC with Fleets & Fuels follow-up