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Texas Clean School Bus Program

The Texas Clean School Bus (TCSB) program is a comprehensive program designed to reduce emissions of diesel exhaust from school buses.

A Program of the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP)

The TCEQ has received a sufficient number of applications to award all available funding under the the Texas Clean School Bus Program and suspends acceptance of applications effective 5:00 p.m., January 30, 2020. The TCEQ may remove the suspension should additional grant funds become available.

FY20 Applications Selected for Funding

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FUNDS ALLOCATED FUNDS REQUESTED AS OF 01/30/20 FUNDS AWARDED AS OF 05/08/20
$6,189,590.00 $18,032,311.00 $8,336,865.00

How Do I Know if I Am Eligible for a Grant?

This section lists general information about school districts, buses, and activities that may be eligible for grant funding. For complete information on the types of projects and expenses that may be eligible for grant funding, refer to the latest Request for Grant Applications (RFGA):


Read the RFGA
Addendum 1.

General Information about eligible applicants, eligible counties, and the types of projects that may be funded is provided below:

  • All public school districts and charter schools in Texas are eligible to apply for this grant.
  • Private schools are not eligible for funding.
  • Public school districts that lease buses are eligible for retrofit projects only.

Replacement

The replacement of an eligible vehicle or piece of equipment with a newer vehicle or piece of equipment.
  • The school bus being replaced must be a pre-2007 model year. A school bus proposed for purchase must be of the current or previous model year at the time the application is submitted.
  • The applicant must own the school bus at the time of application, and must have continuously owned the school bus and have been listed as the owner on the title for a minimum of two years immediately preceding the application date.
  • Unless the vocational type of the school bus is exempt from inspection and registration requirements, the school bus must currently be registered for operation in Texas and must have been continuously inspected and registered in Texas for the two years immediately preceding the application date.
  • Applicants must submit documentation with the application to show compliance with the ownership and registration requirements, including a copy of the school bus title for the two years immediately preceding the submission of the grant application.
  • The school bus must be currently, and for the two years immediately preceding submission of the grant application, operating on a regular daily route to and from a school during the regular school year.
  • A replacement school bus must be the same type as the school bus being replaced. For the purpose of this grant round, school bus types are defined by the chassis configuration, and the gross vehicle weight rating. Refer to the FY 2020 RFGA, Appendix B: School Bus Types).

Maximum Grant Amount for Replacement Projects

A grant recipient may be eligible for reimbursement of up to 80% of the eligible incremental costs associated with the purchase of the replacement school bus, not to exceed the maximum grant amount established by the TCEQ for that activity. Refer to Maximum Grant Amount Table No. 1 in the RFGA to determine the eligible grant amount.

Retrofit Projects

To meet the TCEQ qualifications for retrofit projects under the TCSB program, a school bus must:
  • be used on a regular, daily route, to and from school and;
  • have at least five years of useful life remaining, unless the applicant agrees to remove the retrofit device at the end of the life of the bus and reinstall it on another bus.

Maximum Grant Amount for Retrofit Projects

Costs per device can range depending on the type of technology chosen. A grant recipient may be eligible for reimbursement of up to 100% of the cost to purchase and install the retrofit device and associated equipment. Review the Request for Grant Applications (RFGA) for eligible equipment and installation costs associated with retrofit projects.

Eligible Retrofit Technologies

The following eligible technologies offer options for cleaner-running school buses. School-bus emissions decrease by as much as 90 percent when these engine or exhaust retrofits are made. All technologies must be approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencies list of verified technologiesExit the TCEQ or the California Air Resources Board's list of verified technologiesExit the TCEQ, or be a technology that the TCEQ commission finds will bring about significant emissions reductions.

  • For buses built from 1994 to 1998:
    • Diesel Particulate Filters:A diesel particulate matter filter (DPF) is a ceramic device that collects the particulate matter in the exhaust stream. The high temperature of the exhaust heats the ceramic structure and allows the particles inside to break down (or oxidize) into less harmful components. DPFs reduce emissions of particulate matter by 60 to 90 percent. DPFs also reduce emissions of hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide by 60 to 90 percent.
  • For buses built before 1994:
    • Diesel Oxidation Catalyst: A diesel oxidation catalyst (DOC) is a device that uses a chemical process to break down pollutants in the exhaust stream into less harmful components. More specifically, it is a physical device with a porous ceramic honeycomb-like structure that is coated with a material that catalyzes a chemical reaction to reduce pollution. DOCs reduce emissions of particulate matter by at least 20 percent. DOCs also reduce emissions of hydrocarbons by 50 percent and carbon monoxide by 40 percent.
  • For all buses:
    • Closed Crankcase Filtration System: A closed crankcase filtration system is a device that uses an air filter to trap particulate matter. When used in conjunction with some type of filtration system in the exhaust stream, these systems may be more effective at reducing children’s in-cabin exposures to pollutants.

How do I Find a Vendor for Retrofit Projects?

The TCEQ and the Texas Comptroller have secured state pricing for the purchase and installation of retrofit technology. This information, including contact information for these vendors, may be found on the Texas Comptroller's websiteExit the TCEQ. A school district is not required to employ a vendor from this list, nor are they limited by this list of vendors.

This page outlines the process for completing and submitting a grant application under the Texas Clean School Bus (TCSB) Program.


The TCEQ has received a sufficient number of applications to award all available funding under the the Texas Clean School Bus Program and suspends acceptance of applications effective 5:00 p.m., January 30, 2020. The TCEQ may remove the suspension should additional grant funds become available.

Download the Workshop Presentation

Follow these steps:

Review the following documents before completing and submitting the Application Forms:

Request for Grant Applications (RFGA) - PDF: The RFGA is the formal announcement of funding opportunities under the TCSB program, and serves as a guide for determining applicant eligibility.

Example Contract - PDF: The TCSB Example Contract contains the terms and conditions which are the legal criteria that an applicant must follow if awarded a grant under the TCSB.

Download the TCSB instructions and application for your project type.


Project Type Instructions Application
Replacement Project Application (TCEQ-20804a) PDF PDF
Retrofit Project Application (TCEQ-20804b) N/A PDF

The TCEQ requires applicants to complete the W-9 to certify their Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN). The W-9 Form must be submitted with the Application Forms.

W-9 Form- Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and CertificationExit the TCEQ(pdf)

Complete your application using the instructions provided. Applicants must complete and submit via regular or express mail two (2) original signed copies of the application and W-9 Form in order to be considered for eligibility. Application forms submitted electronically will not be accepted.


Regular Mail:
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Air Grants Division
TCSB, MC-204 (TCSB)
P.O. Box 13087
Austin, TX 78711-3087
Express Mail:
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Air Grants Division
TCSB, MC-204 (TCSB)
12100 Park 35 Circle
Austin, TX 78753

Questions on obtaining the TCSB RFGA and Example Contract, determining the eligibility of a project, or completing and submitting applications? Contact TERP staff to discuss.

Reports and Information

FAQs

Tools & Links:

  • Other Strategies to Reduce Bus Emissions - Schools can also adopt voluntary strategies to help reduce school bus emissions. These strategies can also help improve fuel economy. Consider these voluntary strategies:
    • Begin a voluntary idling limit for school buses (see this sample idling policy).
    • Start enhanced maintenance programs.

Manufacturers of Dual-Fuel Conversion Systems

The TCEQ announces the availability of procedures for a manufacturer of a dual-fuel (natural gas + diesel) conversion system for the retrofit of an existing heavy-duty on-road or non-road engine to request a determination by the TCEQ of the emissions reduction factors that may be used in considering an application for grant funding under the ERIG program.

Dual-Fuel Conversions

Retrofit activities to convert a heavy-duty on-road or non-road engine to operate under a dual-fuel configuration that uses natural gas and diesel fuel may be considered using a different minimum standard for the reduction in NOx than is required for other types of projects. The minimum standards will be established in each RFGA(pdf).

How to Request a Determination of Emission Reduction Factors:

In order to determine a NOx emissions percentage reduction factor to use in the application for a dual-fuel retrofit project, manufacturers may submit emissions test data to the TCEQ to evaluate the emissions reductions that will be accepted through the use of a particular system. The following notice and procedures documents provide information for manufacturers to complete this process.

Dual-Fuel Conversion Systems Evaluated by the TCEQ:

The dual-fuel conversion systems that have been evaluated by the TCEQ and assigned a NOx emissions percentage reduction factor are listed below. Copies of the letters sent to the manufacturers assigning a percentage reduction factor for each system evaluated may be obtained from the links listed below.


Questions or Comments?

If you have questions regarding the TCEQ's Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP) program, you may contact us toll free at 800-919-TERP (8377).

You may also contact us by email at terp@tceq.texas.gov or send correspondence to the following addresses:


Regular Mail:
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Air Grants Division
TCSB, MC-204
P.O. Box 13087
Austin, TX 78711-3087
Express Mail:
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Air Grants Division
TCSB, MC-204
12100 Park 35 Circle
Austin, TX 78753