For Immediate Release
February 3, 2012
Contact: Marcia Alexander-Adams
Phone: (202) 267-3488
The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Voluntary Airport Low Emission Program (VALE) is a national program designed to reduce all sources of airport ground emissions. Congress created the program in 2004 to help airport sponsors meet their state-related air quality responsibilities under the Clean Air Act. It is funded through the Airport Improvement Program and Passenger Facility Charges.
The VALE program is available to commercial service airports located in poor air quality areas of the country as designated by the Environmental Protection Agency. Airports can obtain VALE funding for cleaner technology that the FAA validates as being cost effective. VALE projects also receive emission reduction credits from State governments, which the airports can use to meet future environmental obligations under the Clean Air Act.
VALE allows airport sponsors to take proactive steps to improve air quality at their facilities. Projects can range from the purchase of low-emission vehicles to major infrastructure improvements. Examples of previously funded projects include: preconditioned air units, electric ground support equipment like bag tugs and belt loaders; natural gas refueling stations for airport buses and shuttles; gate electrification; and alternative fuel systems including geothermal systems and solar facilities.
In fiscal year 2011, the FAA issued VALE grants for 12 projects at 11 airports for low-emission projects. Since 2005, the FAA has funded 52 low-emission projects at 30 airports representing a total investment of $138 million ($109 million in federal grants and $29 million in local airport matching funds) in clean airport technology. Through VALE, airports are reducing ozone emissions by approximately 320 tons per year which is the equivalent to removing 17,600 cars and trucks off the road annually.
For information about the program including a list of eligible airports and projects, go to the VALE web site: www.faa.gov/airports/environmental/vale.