Photo courtesy Cross Sound Ferry Services.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), under the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA), is awarding $800,000 to the Connecticut Maritime Foundation to purchase and install 2 new diesel marine engines in a passenger ferry operating out of New London, Connecticut, that provides year-round service to Orient Point and Block Island.

According to the EPA, diesel engines contribute significantly to air pollution, especially in areas such as New London County, a county identified by EPA as having high levels of emissions from diesel engines. The fine particles in diesel exhaust pose serious health risks, including aggravated asthma and other respiratory symptoms. Children are especially vulnerable to these effects. The Northeast has some of the highest asthma rates in the nation, including a childhood asthma rate above 10 percent in all 6 New England states.

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