Baucus, Tester announce diesel emission reduction plan clears the Senate

Senators Say the Legislation Will Boost Job Opportunities at Stillwater Mining Company

(Washington D.C.)-  Montana’s U.S. Senators Max Baucus and Jon Tester announced the Senate passed an effort to boost Montana jobs through the bi-partisan Diesel Emissions Reduction Act of 2010. Montana-based Stillwater Mining Company produces the palladium and platinum for the diesel emission reducing filters used nationwide for this program. The program has been particularly helpful in Montana by awarding grants to school districts to help retrofit school buses with diesel emission reducing filters.

“Passing this bill protects our environment and boosts the demand for palladium coming from the Stillwater Mine. This is a bipartisan effort that will help create good-paying jobs in Montana,” said Baucus, the senior Democrat on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

“Montanans sent me to the U.S. Senate to create jobs and get work done for them, and I’m proud that this bipartisan bill will accomplish that,” Tester said.  “Stillwater Mine is a valuable asset to Montana’s and America’s economy. This bill is a win-win for Montana because it keeps folks working at Stillwater while ensuring that our vehicles burn cleaner.”

Frank McAllister, Chairman and CEO of Stillwater Mining Company commended the support of Senator Baucus in moving the recently passed Diesel Emissions Reduction Act through the Senate, stating “This is a great piece of legislation.  The Diesel Emission Reduction legislation supports the clean air technology made possible through utilizing platinum and palladium, technology which reduces harmful diesel emissions improving the environment.”
The bill is a five-year reauthorization of the popular 2005 Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) that established a voluntary national and state-level grant and loan program to reduce diesel emissions.

For every $1 invested in the DERA program, it’s anticipated to yield $13 in health and economic benefits in return. Retrofitting diesel engines provides enormous environmental benefits, yet there are few direct economic incentives for vehicle and equipment owners to do so. The financial incentives provided by DERA support voluntary rather than regulatory efforts to protect public health and help states meet EPA air quality standards.

Senators Baucus and Tester co-sponsored DERA 2010 along with 17 Senators from both parties.