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DEP opens alt-fuel grants for light vehicles

By , - Last modified: June 4, 2013 at 9:24 AM

The state Department of Environmental Protection is making it easier for companies and other organizations to convert their fleets of cars, vans and light trucks to natural gas.

DEP last week opened its Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant Natural Gas Vehicle program for medium to lightweight vehicles. The grants will provide money for buying natural-gas cars and trucks weighing less than 14,000 pounds or converting the fuel systems of existing vehicles.

The program has roughly $10 million available, and applications are due July 26, with grants to be awarded in the fall, the agency said. Details are available on the DEP website.

To be eligible, applicants must propose to convert or purchase at least five vehicles. Applicants are encouraged to partner with each other to meet the minimum if they don't meet it on their own, DEP said.

The agency also is accepting applications for innovation in other types of alternative-fuel vehicles, such as trains or boats.

The grants are funded through the Pennsylvania's natural-gas impact fee, part of 2012's Act 13, the law that overhauled the state's natural-gas policy.

The impact fee also funds grants for heavy vehicle conversion. The state made its first grants in that category last month, with Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority and the Shipley Group among the 18 organizations receiving money.

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