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Grants to USA Nonprofits, Agencies, and School
Districts for Programs to Reduce Air Pollution

Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) National Grant

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

03/16/21 11:59 PM ET


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Grants to USA and territories nonprofit organizations, government agencies, tribes, and school districts for programs to reduce air pollution. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take several weeks to complete. The purpose of funding is to implement programs that incentivize and accelerate the upgrading or retirement of the legacy diesel fleet.

Eligible diesel vehicles, engines and equipment may include buses, Class 5 – Class 8 heavy-duty highway vehicles, marine engines, locomotives and nonroad engines, equipment or vehicles such as those used in construction, handling of cargo, agriculture, mining or energy production.

Eligible diesel emissions reduction solutions include verified retrofit technologies such as exhaust after-treatment technologies, engine upgrades, and cleaner fuels and additives, verified idle reduction technologies, verified aerodynamic technologies, verified low rolling resistance tires, certified engine replacements and conversions, and certified vehicle or equipment replacement. 

Priority will be given to vehicles that operate in areas with poor air quality, or that service goods movement facilities. Further priority for funding is given to projects with outcomes that benefit affected communities, those that engage affected communities in the design and performance of the project, and those which demonstrate the ability to promote and continue efforts to reduce emissions after the project has ended.

Scope of Work

DERA grants provide funding to eligible recipients so that they may implement programs which incentivize and accelerate the upgrading or retirement of the legacy diesel fleet. Eligible activities include the retrofit or replacement of existing diesel engines, vehicles and equipment with EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) certified engine configurations and verified retrofit and idle reduction technologies. DERA grants cannot fund research and development and DERA grants cannot fund technology demonstration, commercialization, certification or verification.

Summary of Program Requirements:

For further information on DERA Programmatic Priorities please see:

Eligible project costs are those costs directly related to the implementation, management, and oversight of the project, including recipient and subrecipient personnel and benefits, equipment, contractual, travel, supplies, subgrants and rebates, and indirect costs. For additional information, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 156026

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

EPA anticipates 2 to 8 cooperative agreement awards per EPA region.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Award Ceiling: $4,000,000; for funding limits by region, see page 26 of the RFA document in Supporting Documents below.

Term of Contract:

The estimated project period for awards resulting from this solicitation is expected to begin on October 1, 2021. EPA anticipates most projects can be completed within 24 months, however initial project periods of up to 36 months will be allowed where justified by the activities, timeline and milestones detailed in the workplan.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Under this solicitation, only the following entities are eligible to apply for assistance, in accordance with 42 U.S.C. 16131 and CFDA 66.039:

1. A regional, state, or local agency, tribal government (or intertribal consortium) or native village, or port authority, which has jurisdiction over transportation or air quality. School districts, municipalities, metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), cities and counties are all generally eligible entities under this assistance agreement program to the extent that they fall within this definition.

2. A nonprofit organization or institution that:
a. Represents or provides pollution reduction or educational services to persons or organizations that own or operate diesel fleets; or
b. Has, as its principal purpose, the promotion of transportation or air quality.

Non-profit organization, as defined by 2 CFR 200.70, means any corporation, trust, association, cooperative or other organization that: (1) is operated primarily for scientific, educational, service, charitable or similar purposes in the public interest; (2) is not organized primarily for profit; and (3) uses its net proceeds to maintain, improve and/or expand its operations.

Note that 2 CFR Part 200 specifically excludes the following types of organizations from the definition of “non-profit organization” because they are separately defined in the regulation: (i) institutions of higher education; and (ii) state, local and federally-recognized Indian tribal governments. While not considered to be a “non-profit organization(s)” as defined by 2 CFR 200.70, Institutions of Higher Education are, nevertheless, eligible to submit applications under this RFA to the extent they fall within the definition above. Hospitals operated by state, tribal, or local governments or that meet the definition of nonprofit at 2 CFR 200.70 are also eligible to apply. For-profit colleges, universities, trade schools, and hospitals are not eligible to apply.

For-profit organizations are not an eligible entity for this funding opportunity. Additionally, non-profit organizations described in Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that engage in lobbying activities as defined in Section 3 of the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 are not eligible to apply.

For the purposes of this RFA, “intertribal consortium” is defined as a partnership between two or more tribes that is authorized by the governing bodies of those tribes to apply for and receive assistance under this program. Intertribal consortia are eligible to receive assistance under this program only if the consortium demonstrates that all members of the consortium meet the eligibility requirements for the program and authorize the consortium to apply for and receive assistance by submitting to EPA documentation of (1) the existence of the partnership between Indian tribal governments, and (2) authorization of the consortium by all its members to apply for and receive the assistance.

Please note that although tribes are eligible to apply for funding under this RFA, the DERA program also expects to issue a separate FY 2021 DERA Tribal Grant RFA in 2021.

For additional information on Eligible and Ineligible Project Costs please see

Pre-proposal Conference:

EPA will host several information sessions regarding this RFA. EPA encourages potential applicants to take advantage of these information sessions to learn more about the DERA program and the grant application process. EPA will highlight any changes to the program from previous years, review eligibility criteria, funding limits and mandatory cost share requirements, and discuss the available options for funding partner fleets. Participants will have the opportunity to have their questions answered by EPA in a public forum. Pre- registration is not required.

Funding Opportunity Information Sessions:

- Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. (ET)
Join the Webinar:
Dial-In: (202) 991-0477
Participant Code: 863 530 573#

- Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 3:00 p.m. (ET)
Join the Webinar:
Dial-In: (202) 991-0477
Participant Code: 609 539 899#

- Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. (ET)
Join the Webinar:
Dial-In: (202) 991-0477
Participant Code: 451 189 144#

Pre-Application Information:

Application packages must be submitted electronically to EPA through no later than Tuesday, March 16, 2021, at 11:59 p.m. (ET) to be considered for funding.

Important Dates
- Thursday, January 14, 2021 Rfa Opens
- Tuesday, March 16, 2021 Rfa Closes – Applications Due
- April-May 2021 Anticipated Notification of Selection
- June-October 2021 Anticipated Award

It is recommended that you try to submit your application to at least three days prior to the deadline. It is essential to allow sufficient time to ensure that your application is properly submitted to BEFORE the due date.

The deadline for submitting questions is March 5, 2021 at 4 p.m. ET. The final Questions and Answers document will be posted on March 10, 2021. All questions and answers, including those from all webinar information sessions, will be added to this document.

Please note that the registration process also requires that your organization have a Unique Entity Identifier (e.g. DUNS number) and a current registration with the System for Award Management ( and the process of obtaining both could take a month or more. Applicants must ensure that all registration requirements are met in order to apply for this opportunity through and should ensure that all such requirements have been met well in advance of the submission deadline.

Applicants must request funding from the EPA regional office which covers their geographic project location. For a list of regions divisions, see here:

- Request For Applications:
- View this opportunity at

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Applicants may email written questions to:

For further information, contact:
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
ATTN: Faye Swift, DERA Grants and Policy Team Leader
OAR, Office of Transportation and Air Quality
WJ Clinton Building North
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW (6406A)
Washington, DC 20460

Phone: (202) 343-9147

CFDA Number:


Funding or Pin Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

Array ( [0] => American Samoa (USA); [1] => Guam (USA); [2] => Puerto Rico (USA); [3] => Virgin Islands (USA); [4] => Northern Mariana Islands (USA); )

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA);   Guam (USA);   Puerto Rico (USA);   Virgin Islands (USA);   Northern Mariana Islands (USA);

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