Recently, Volkswagen agreed on a settlement with EPA to resolve allegations of violating the Clean Air Act regarding the sale of automobiles with 2 and 3 liter diesel engines from 2009 to 2015. As part of that settlement, Volkswagen agreed to provide a Mitigation Trust Fund, or MTF. This MTF is dedicated to funding NOx emission reductions to offset the excess emissions produced by non-compliant Volkswagen automotive engines. Among those initiatives is an option for state governments to subsidize upgrades of older marine engines. Those upgrades will bring marine engines in line with U.S. EPA Tier 1 or better emission standards. Further, states may also partially fund engine replacements to Tier 3 or better. It’s a rare opportunity for Caterpillar’s marine customers to improve their power across the board, at a potentially much reduced cost.
Here, Product Support Manager David Holt explains how the MTF will benefit many Caterpillar customers.
“States can use the Mitigation Trust Fund to subsidize up to 40 percent of the parts plus labor cost of upgrading older Cat® 3500 series engines to emit equivalent to Tier 1 or Tier 2.”
The upgrade process is comprehensive and it can be accomplished in hull without significant modifications to the vessel. Caterpillar already offers upgrade kits for this very purpose, and each one comes with all of the necessary iron to boost the engine to a cleaner emissions level. Some of those components include aftercooler, fuel injectors, turbocharger, camshafts, cylinder heads, electronic controls and all of the lines necessary to ensure the engine functions and communicates as needed. A new electronic display and control panel will also be installed to allow captains to monitor engine performance as intended.
Caterpillar can help vessel owners apply for the funding if a state offers subsidies for marine vessels. Once secured, the upgrade process can be implemented during a scheduled major overhaul or during a retrofit, with a trusted Cat dealer using Cat parts.
Upgrading with MTF funding is not only a cost effective way to greatly reduce NOx and PM emissions, it will also accelerate performance across the board.
“It adds many years of life to the engine and may allow the vessel to operate in other territories and waters that could not have operated in before. The customer will also realize fuel savings, improved crew safety and convenience in operating the vessel, including reduced noise and vibration on the vessel.”
Emissions reduction will be verified by the Cat dealer and by Caterpillar’s engineers, so vessel owners can rest easy that their engine will meet EPA requirements. And, of course, the upgrade is backed by Caterpillar’s global dealer network.
The process for securing funding is involved, but if your marine engine is part of the 3500 series, is built after 1993, is Tier 1, EUI or MUI and operates in U.S. waters, contact your Cat dealer for details on how to utilize MTF funding for an engine upgrade.