SHA’s operations and maintenance fleet includes approximately 912 gasoline powered vehicles and 1350 pieces of diesel powered equipment. Maintaining our fleet vehicles at peak operating conditions is one way we lessen our environmental impact. Beyond that, SHA is always looking at innovations and best practices that can help us further protect the environment and conserve resources.
Some techniques are fairly simple and easy to implement, like our engine idling policy that helps us reduce emissions by switching off engines after five minutes of idling. Other methods involve a little more work. SHA received a $250,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to aid in retrofitting many of our diesel trucks with diesel oxidation catalysts. We completed the installation of these devices in 2010, and almost immediately saw a 50% reduction in diesel emissions. Replacement vehicles come with the new filters, so as SHA replaces aging vehicles, we expect to see even further reductions in diesel emissions. This effort has enabled SHA to comply with the EPA’s Clean Air Act standards for ozone and particulate matter levels in the Chesapeake Bay area.