Congress passes diesel act

The U.S. House of Representatives on Dec. 21 approved the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act by a voice vote following the U.S. Senate’s unanimous approval on Dec. 16. President Obama is expected to sign the five-year reauthorization into law.

DERA (H.R. 5809) is a five-year reauthorization of the program created in 2005 to establish voluntary national and state-level grant and loan programs to reduce diesel emissions by upgrading and modernizing older diesel engines and equipment. The Diesel Technology Forum says DERA is supported by a coalition of more than 500 environmental, health, industry, labor and government organizations.

The bipartisan legislation was introduced on Nov. 18 by U.S. Sens. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) and Tom Carper (D-Del.) and cosponsored by several of their colleagues, including Environment and Public Works Committee Chair Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Ranking Member James Inhofe (R-Okla.). The House sponsors were U.S. Reps. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) and Laura Richardson (D-Calif.).