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VW Deal Can Pay For Marine Engine Conversions

Billions of dollars paid out by Volkswagen to settle civil and criminal charges of emissions tampering are going to a trust fund, and some of that money will be available to improve the emissions of marine diesel engines.

Volkswagen had been charged by the federal government with equipping their diesel-fueled cars with software “defeat devices” that got around emissions restrictions by temporarily turning off emissions controls to achieve better engine performance. The devices were specifically set to end controls of emissions of nitrogen oxide (NOx), a potent pollutant.

The $2.9 billion Environmental Trust included in the Volkswagen settlement provides funding for states to upgrade or repower older vehicles and equipment to rapidly reduce emissions of oxides of NOx that contribute to ground level ozone, or smog.

The settlement was approved in October 2016 and the trust was set up on October 2, 2017. December 1, 2017, was the deadline for states to file their status with the trustees; the list of beneficiaries was published January 30.

The funds will be distributed in staggered payments using a formula based on the number of Volkswagen diesel engines registered in each state. States will receive one-third of their total funding every three years. States will have 10 years to spend their portion and must use the money to fund projects that reduce emissions of NOx from mobile sources. Eligible diesel engines include those used by harbor boats and trains.

More information is available at www.epa.gov/enforcement/volkswagen-clean-air-act-civil-settlement and on the website of the Diesel Technology Forum, www.dieselforum.org/vwfund.

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