Michigan Plans To Use Dirty Dieselgate Money To Replace Its Diesel School Buses

Photo: AP

There are looming questions over the environmental impact of junking every dirty Volkswagen Dieselgate vehicle. But there some tangible outcomes from the massive VW settlements that are starting to emerge, like in Michigan where school officials are proposing to spend $30 million to replace old diesel school buses.


According to Michigan Radio, the proposal says that more than 5,000 diesel buses that are over a decade old operate in Michigan. They’d like to see the fleet replaced with “cleaner-running diesel engines or powered by natural gas,” Michigan Radio reports.

Don Oldendorf is a schools lobbyist working on the project, and he says the new busses could be fueled by cleaner diesel or natural gas.

“So the notion is that would help the state, help school districts, help air quality.”

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has opened a public comment period on how Michigan’s share of the settlement money should be used.

Olendorf says, even if it’s approved, $30 million would only begin to address the need to replace old school busses.

In the Michigan DEQ’s Request for Information on the VW settlement, replacing school buses falls within the list of eligible projects for the settlement, along with: replacing large and medium trucks, freight switchers, or airport ground support equipment.

Even if the request for money for buses only refurbishes a fraction of the state’s fleet, it’s at least nice to see some action in the works.

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Ryan Felton

Senior Reporter, Jalopnik/Special Projects Desk

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