Volkswagen has finalized the last of three settlements with the US Department of Justice, part of the German automaker’s penance for its evasion of emissions regulations. Almost $3 billion of the settlement funds is being directed to the Environmental Mitigation Trust, which will fund state-level clean transportation grant programs.
States are now in control of designing their own grant programs, and are developing their plans based on their unique funding priorities. For example, Nevada is designating 80% of its funds to on-road usage and prioritizing projects that align with the Nevada Electric Highway Initiative. Pennsylvania is designating 45% of its funds for rail and tug replacement projects.
Many states have already begun releasing their draft plans, and the rest are expected to release theirs in the coming weeks and months, so time is of the essence for technology providers, fuel suppliers and fleet managers to identify incentives that could be a good fit for their projects.
There is an overwhelming amount of information out there, to say the least – the three partial consent decrees contain 633 pages of legalese, and over 70 state agencies have published their own information about the settlement.
Clean tech consulting firm Gladstein Neandross & Associates (GNA) has researched and boiled down the VW settlement details so fleet managers and other interested parties can identify the best incentives for their projects.
GNA’s new VW Funding 360 Portal offers access to state-specific intelligence. Users can also sign up to receive email notifications when states release or update their VW funding programs. The portal includes a Project Competitiveness Calculator, a free tool that stakeholders can use to evaluate their projects’ viability for VW settlement funding.