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Stand Up for Transportation, Stand Up for Clean Air: Clean Diesel Moves a Majority of America's Public Transit


WASHINGTON -- April 9, 2015: As numerous organizations, policymakers and transportation advocates today promote the need for a healthy and well-funded transportation system during "Stand Up for Transportation Day", the Diesel Technology Forum is highlighting the new generation of transportation now available that offers better fuel efficiency and improved environmental performance.

"As Congress and the Administration work in our nation's Capitol to address America's transportation funding issues, U.S. and international manufacturers are improving the energy efficiency and environmental performance of equipment in all economic sectors – from passenger vehicles, to agricultural equipment to commercial trucks," said Allen Schaeffer, the Executive Director of the Diesel Technology Forum (Diesel Forum).

"While the funding and policy issues remain to be resolved in Washington D.C., we are ready for the next generation transportation system. We are ready with newest technology that enables the cleanest and most efficient transportation and goods movement system.

"And we are ready with the most advanced, powerful and fuel efficient machines and equipment to rebuild, renew and repair that infrastructure with the least impact to the environment."

Stand Up for Transportation Day April 9th is Stand Up For Transportation Day to raise awareness of the need for a long term reauthorization of surface transportation spending legislation that, in part, supports mass transit.

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According to the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), more and more Americans are taking public transportation. In fact, ridership is the highest it has been since 1956 and has been growing since 1995. As more Americans come to rely on buses, trains, streetcars, railroads and ferries, one of the largest funding streams that supports public transportation infrastructure – the so-called "Highway Bill" - is set to expire next month.

Without long term funding provided by reauthorization of transportation spending program, including the mass transit program, many transit agencies will not be able to purchase new equipment that comes with the latest emission control and fuel savings technologies that delivers both people and clean air for communities.

Over 75% of U.S. Transit Buses Are Diesel or Diesel Hybrids According to APTA, America's transit bus fleet is one of the newest and cleanest heavy-duty fleets around. In 2013, 77 percent of transit buses are powered by diesel engines and fuel, or diesel hybrid engines. Of that, almost half were powered by a diesel engine that met or exceeded the first clean diesel standard for model year 2007 and another 27 percent of buses were powered by an engine that met or exceeded the stricter emission standard for model year 2010.

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These standards results in significant clean air benefits by reducing emissions of particulate matter and ozone forming compounds to near zero.

Also, a growing number of transit districts are incorporating the use of renewable biodiesel fuels into their diesel bus fleets, further improving their environmental and climate sensibilities. Other transit agencies are incorporating diesel-electric technologies as well.

"We should all tip our hats to America's transit fleets for adopting new clean air technologies," Schaeffer said. "Without a long term reauthorization of surface transportation spending that support public transportation, many transit agencies may not be able to maintain their commitment to purchase new clean equipment to meet growing transit demands while improving air quality for everyone."