MPCA offers $5.2 million in grants for replacing heavy-duty diesel vehicles with electric or cleaner diesel

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Thursday, May 27, 2021 | Contact: Mary Robinson, 612-757-2525

In the latest distribution of national Volkswagen settlement funds to help clean up emissions from older diesel vehicles, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is offering more than $5 million in grants to replace heavy-duty diesel vehicles with all-electric, cleaner diesel, or alternative fuel models.

About $3.5 million will directly support organizations making the transition to all-electric vehicles and equipment.

“Making the switch from fossil fuels to all-electric technology is an important step Minnesota’s businesses and local communities can take to reduce their carbon footprints,” said MPCA Commissioner Laura Bishop. “Minnesota is well-positioned to accelerate this transition through our own home-based innovative companies like Zeus, Rosenbauer, and Polaris that are developing electric vehicle technology and creating good-paying jobs while fighting climate change.”

Another $1.7 million is available to replace older diesel vehicles and equipment with new, non-electric models powered by diesel, propane, and natural gas as well as fuel/electric hybrids.

The grants will help organizations purchase new on-road vehicles such as medium-duty trucks, class 8 heavy-duty trucks, and transit and shuttle buses. Some airport ground support equipment, forklifts, and port equipment are also eligible for these vehicle replacement grants. The grants provide varying amounts depending on the type of equipment to be replaced.

“When designing these grants, we heard loud and clear from our stakeholders that Minnesota’s businesses and communities want to invest in cleaner vehicle technology so they can meet their own goals for the environment and sustainability.”

MPCA Commissioner Laura Bishop

This new grant round will help eliminate cost barriers by providing crucial financial assistance to private companies, local governments, and non-profit organizations looking to purchase new electric vehicles that meet their needs.

Previous grants from MPCA’s Volkswagen program have targeted air quality improvements through replacing or upgrading older diesel equipment and by funding expansion of the state’s charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. Air pollution from vehicles is the largest source of air pollution across Minnesota, and the common thread though all the grants is leveraging VW settlement funds to reduce emissions from the transportation sector.

Learn more about this grant opportunity in an online training session on June 10. Applications for grant funds are due by August 9, 2021. For more information, visit the MPCA’s grants webpage here.