Lower-Emission School Bus Program

This page last reviewed April 2, 2015


Overview

The primary goal of the Air Resources Board's (ARB's) Lower-Emission School Bus Program is to reduce school children's exposure to both cancer-causing and smog-forming pollution. The program provides grant funding for new, safer school buses and to put air pollution control equipment (i.e., retrofit devices) on buses that are already on the road.


child drawing of a schoolbus
With appreciation to Ms. Judy Fogel and her Brentwood Science Magnet School 1999-2000 first grade class for the art work. With special thanks to Lily, Leslie, Ilya, Hugo, Justin, and Ricardo.

San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District Implementing the Lower-Emission School Bus Program on Behalf of ARB

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD) is implementing the Lower-Emission School Bus Program on behalf of ARB, prioritizing funding for school districts in the small and medium air districts. For eligible school bus owners in small or medium air districts, when the application period is open, you would apply for funding directly to the SJVAPCD as well as checking with your local air district for any available local funds.

Please see the website for the Lower-Emission School Bus Program at the SJVAPCD.

Fiscal Year 2014-2015 Agreement between ARB and SJVAPCD to Fund Statewide School Bus Retrofit Program with State Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) and ARB Funds

On March 18, 2015, ARB and SJVAPCD fully executed a grant agreement that funds a statewide school bus retrofit program. The agreement allocates U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) funds from a Cooperative Agreement between U.S. EPA and ARB, and funds from ARB, to SJVAPCD to implement the program. The grant agreement awards $420,000 – $249,792 in State DERA funding and $170,208 in ARB funding – to SJVAPCD to retrofit school buses throughout California with diesel emission control strategies (with the option to implement several other back-up project types if necessary).  Projects in small and medium air districts will receive funding preference over projects in large air districts.   

Under similar agreements, SJVAPCD accomplished the following with funds from the previous fiscal years:
  • Fiscal Year 2011-2012: 30 school buses retrofitted statewide with a total grant award of $546,000 ($317,185 in State DERA funds and $228,815 in ARB funds)
  • Fiscal Year 2012-2013: 41 school buses retrofitted statewide with a total grant award of $777,000 ($454,899 in State DERA funds and $322,101 in ARB funds)
  • Fiscal Year 2013-2014: 19 school buses retrofitted statewide with a total grant award of $357,000 ($205,152 in State DERA funds and $151,848 in ARB funds)

Agreement between ARB and SJVAPCD to Fund Statewide School Bus Retrofit and Replacement Program with Funds from the Budget Act of 2013

The Budget Act of 2013 – Assembly Bill 110, Chapter 20, Statutes of 2013 – authorizes ARB to use approximately $1.1 million of funds from the California Clean Water, Clean Air, Safe Neighborhood Parks, and Coastal Protection Act of 2002 (Proposition 40) and the Highway Safety, Traffic Reduction, Air Quality, and Port Security Bond Act of 2006 (Proposition 1B).  Senate Bill 96, Chapter 356, Statutes of 2013 directs the use of those funds on the Lower-Emission School Bus Program.  On February 4, 2014, ARB entered into an agreement with the SJVAPCD to allocate the aforementioned funds to the SJVAPCD to implement a statewide school bus retrofit and replacement program.  Projects in small and medium air districts will receive funding priority over projects in large air districts.

Lower-Emission School Bus Program 2007

Proposition 1B, which was approved by the voters on November 7th, 2006, enacts the Highway Safety, Traffic Reduction, Air Quality, and Port Security Bond Act of 2006. This bond act authorizes $200 million for replacing and retrofitting school buses. Historic Lower-Emission School Bus Program 2000 - 2006 The ARB staff, in coordination with the California Energy Commission (CEC) and the local air pollution control districts, has developed guidelines for implementation of the Lower-Emission School Bus Program funds. The guidelines cover which buses and retrofits can be purchased, requirements for the CEC and air districts running the program, and the benefits of the program.

Guideline Web Pages for Program Fiscal Years:

2007-2008 2006 2004 2003 2000-2001


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