Stimulus funds aimed at reducing pollution

There’s $517,500 available for North Carolina truckers who upgrade their diesel fleets to reduce pollution.

The funds will be distributed by the N.C. Division of Air Quality as rebates to truckers who replace heavy-duty diesel trucks with 2010 compliant vehicles or purchase auxiliary power units for existing trucks, the division said.

Commonly called APUs, the auxiliary units are electric or low-emission engines that truckers can use to power heaters, air conditioners and other in-cab accessories rather than idling their diesel engines.

The rebates are the second phase of a $1.73 million federal stimulus grant to the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources to be used to reduce emissions from diesel engines, division spokesman Tom Mather said.

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