The Maryland Port Administration is accepting applications from owner-operators serving the Port of Baltimore who are interested in a subsidy to replace their older model truck with a modern truck that pollutes less.
Earlier this year, the MPA received a $750,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to extend its dray truck replacement program. The MPA said it will provide up to $30,000 to short-haul operators for scrapping pre-1997 model year trucks with ones powered by 2010 or newer clean-diesel engines.
Dray truckers typically buy used trucks that have been retired from long-haul operations. The program provides up to 50 percent of the cost of replacing an old truck.
So far the program has replaced 82 trucks. Previously, the port offered up to $20,000 per truck for 2007 EPA-compliant engines, but the new trucks have better emissions controls and are more expensive. The EPA grant for the first time requires the money to go toward 2010 or newer engines.
The EPA allows 15 percent of grant money to go toward administrative purposes, such as helping busy truck drivers fill out applications and verifying from scrap yards and truck dealers that old trucks were properly destroyed and that new ones meet the EPA standards.
(Read more about the EPA's involvement in cutting emissions in ports in the June feature "Winds of Change