Three Missouri and Kansas organizations have received grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help cut diesel emissions from heavy trucks.

The funds are part of $64 million allocated nationwide this fiscal year through the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act grant program. Through DERA, EPA provides support for retrofits, engine upgrades, vehicle replacements, idle reduction, cleaner fuels and financing for clean technologies for trucks, buses, and non-road equipment.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has been selected to receive more than $1.8 million in federal funds with a state cost share of $382,425. This grant will aid in improvements to school buses, trash trucks and concrete mixers, as well as switch engine locomotives in Springfield, St. Louis and Kansas City. The improvements will include vehicle replacements, the addition of diesel oxidation catalysts, and/or the addition of anti-idling technologies to cut diesel emissions.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association of Grain Valley, Mo., has been selected to receive a $1 million grant to implement a project with a total cost of more than $2.3 million. Through the project, approximately 300 auxiliary power units will be installed in long-haul diesel trucks operating in EPA Regions 6 and 7. (Region 7 includes Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and nine tribal nations. Region 6 includes Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and 66 tribal nations.)

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has been selected to receive $233,218 to assist with school bus upgrades and the installations of three APUs on long-haul trucks in Wichita, Kan. The grant, paired with $45,394 in state matching funds, will also allow APUs to be installed in five in-town trucks.

Since Congress first appropriated funds under this program, 279 grants totaling nearly $350 million have been awarded.

Funding for this year's grants is provided by the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's National Clean Diesel Funding Assistance Program.